Live From Geneva: Davide Gaiotto and Stephen Hawking Honoured by the Fundamental Physics Prize Foundation


Perimeter Faculty member Davide Gaiotto and Perimeter Distinguished Visiting Research Chair Stephen Hawking are among those being honoured at the inaugural Fundamental Physics Prize Ceremony in Geneva, Switzerland, on Wednesday, March 20, 2013. The ceremony, hosted by actor Morgan Freeman, can be viewed via a live webcast on the CERN website at 3:15 pm EST.

Gaiotto is one of three laureates of the New Horizons in Physics Prize, each valued at $100,000, recognizing work with high potential to lead to future breakthroughs. According to the prize citation, Gaiotto was chosen for his “far-reaching new insights about duality, gauge theory, and geometry, and especially for his work linking theories in different dimensions in most unexpected ways.”

Hawking will receive one of two Special Fundamental Physics Prizes of $3 million each, with the other special prize being shared among seven leaders of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) project. The Foundation is foregoing the regular nomination process in light of the recipients’ spectacular contributions. In Hawking’s case, the Foundation highlighted “his discovery of Hawking radiation from black holes, and his deep contributions to quantum gravity and quantum aspects of the early universe.”

The Fundamental Physics Prize Foundation is a new organization that offers a suite of prizes in physics. Although new, these awards are already considered major distinctions. In contrast to the Nobel Prize, which has a strong leaning toward tangible, quantifiable, or practical discoveries, FPP prizes are intended to recognize theorists and researchers who are “dedicated to advancing our knowledge of the universe at the deepest level.”

 

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