Kavli Prizes

The Kavli Prizes

Science prizes for the 21st century, the Kavli Prizes recognize scientists for their seminal advances in three research areas: astrophysics, nanoscience and neuroscience. Consisting of a scroll, medal and cash award of one million dollars, a prize in each of these areas is awarded every two years beginning in 2008.

The Kavli Prizes are presented in cooperation and partnership with the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters, and the Norwegian Ministry of Education and Research. The prizes are awarded at a ceremony in Oslo, Norway – Fred Kavli's native country – with the President of the Norwegian Academy presiding.

Independent of The Kavli Foundation, Kavli Prize recipients are chosen by three prize committees comprised of distinguished international scientists recommended by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the French Academy of Sciences, the Max Planck Society, the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and The Royal Society. After making their selection for Award recipients, the recommendations of these prize committees are confirmed by the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters.

2018 Kavli Prizes

Seven scientists from 5 countries shared the 2018 Kavli Prize of USD $1 million prizes in each of the fields of astrophysics, nanoscience and neuroscience. 

This year's prize honored scientists who studied molecules in space and illuminated the life cycle of stars and planets, developed a tool to precisely edit DNA, and unlocked the neuroscience underlying human hearing.

The Kavli Prize in Astrophysics went to Ewine van Dishoeck (Leiden University). Emmanuelle Charpentier (Max Planck Institute, Berlin), Jennifer Doudna (UC Berkeley) and Virginijus Šikšnys (Vilnius University) shared the Kavli Prize in Nanoscience. The Kavli Prize in Neuroscience was awarded to Robert Fettiplace (UW-Madison), A. James Hudspeth (Rockefeller University) and Christine Petit (Institut Pasteur).

Read a roundtable discussion with the 2018 Neuroscience Laureates

2016 Kavli Prizes

Nine pioneering scientists from Germany, Switzerland, the UK and the USA were named recipients of the 2016 Kavli Prize.

The laureates were selected for the direct detection of gravitational waves, the invention and realization of atomic force microscopy, and for the discovery of mechanisms that allow experience and neural activity to remodel brain function.

The Kavli Prize in Astrophysics went to Ronald W.P. Drever, Kip S. Thorne and Rainer Weiss. Gerd Binnig, Christoph Gerber and Calvin Quate shared the Kavli Prize in Nanoscience. The Kavli Prize in Neuroscience was awarded to Eve Marder, Michael Merzenich and Carla Shatz.

Read the full press release and a roundtable discussion with the 2016 Neuroscience Laureates

The Kavli Prize in Neuroscience

The Kavli Prize in Neuroscience is awarded for outstanding achievement in advancing our knowledge and understanding of the brain and nervous system, including molecular neuroscience, cellular neuroscience, systems neuroscience, neurogenetics, developmental neuroscience, cognitive neuroscience, computational neuroscience and related facets of the brain and nervous system.

The Kavli Prize in Neuroscience has twice been awarded to Yale University researchers: