Countries With The Most Nobel Laureates In Chemistry

Jacobus Henricus van 't Hoff​, the first recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1901.
Jacobus Henricus van 't Hoff​, the first recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1901.

The Noble Prize in Chemistry is given as an award to persons who have made extraordinary advancements in the field of Chemistry. It is one of the many such distinctions given annually to internationally deserving contributors in the scientific, cultural, and academic sciences. The Nobel Committee of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences is responsible for the awarding of the prizes. The awarding ceremonies for chemistry, physics, medicine, economics, and literature are all held in Stockholm, Sweden. However, the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded in Oslo, Norway. The Nobel prizes were first given in 1901.

Nobel Laureates In Chemistry

The first recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1901 was from the Netherlands, Jacobus Henricus van 't Hoff. He discovered the laws of chemical dynamics and osmotic pressure in solutions. In the succeeding decades, the United States, Germany, and the United Kingdom combine to account for more than 70% of all Nobel Laureate chemists. Topping the countries with the most recipients of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry is the United States with 63 recipients. Theodore William Richards was the first American to receive the Nobel Prize in 1914. Among the recently distinguished American chemists who also received the award were William E. Moerner and Eric Betzig in 2014; and Aziz Sancar and Paul L. Modrich in 2015. Germany garnered 28 Nobel Prize in Chemistry through the past 115 years. Hermann Emil Fischer was the first German Nobel Laureate in Chemistry in 1902. Other distinguished German chemists who were recipients: Gerhard Ertl in 2007 and Stefan W. Hell in 2014. The United Kingdom garnered 27 Nobel Laureates in Chemistry. Sir William Ramsay was the first Englishman, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1904. Other recipients were Venkatraman Ramakrishnan 2009, Michael Levitt 2013, and Tomas Lindahl 2015. France has its own Nobel Laureates in Chemistry The first among its eight recipients was Henri Moissan in 1906, Marie Curie in 1911, Irène Joliot-Curie and her husband, Frédéric Joliot-Curie in 1935, and recently, Yves Chauvin in 2005. The following countries also have Nobel Laureates: Switzerland (6), Japan (5), Canada (4), Sweden (4), Netherlands (3), Israel (3), and New Zealand (2). Other Countries With Nobel Laureate Chemists have one each.

Criticism Of The Awards

Although the Nobel Prize for Chemistry is a very distinguished award and given by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, there have been criticisms from some quarters about the relevance of some recipients in recent years. The criticisms were about the awards going to non-chemists and instead were awarded to works in molecular biology, biochemistry, and also to a materials scientist. Some experts also felt that the inclusion of major disciplines such as mathematics and biology in the Nobel Prize is just right at the moment. The Economist also comments on the fact that although Nobel’s stipulated only several disciplines at that time, it was because biology was not a major science then and that mathematics is a major discipline and should be included as well.

Countries With The Most Nobel Laureates In Chemistry

RankCountryNobel Laureates In Chemistry
1United States63
3United Kingdom27
11New Zealand2
12Other Countries With Nobel Laureate Chemists1 each

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