Technology Academy Finland opens the nomination period for the 2016 Millennium Technology Prize today. Nominations for the prize can be made by universities, research institutes and other academic actors as well as companies all around the world. The prize is open to all fields of technology and all nationalities. The nominee can be an individual researcher or a research group. Nominations are accepted until 31 July 2015. The winner will be announced in April 2016.
Aalto University is a strategic partner of Technology Academy Finland. One of its roles is to propose new members for the International Selection Committee.
Awarded every two years, the one million euro Millennium Technology Prize is one of the largest science and technology prizes in the world. It was awarded for the first time in 2004.The prize is awarded for disruptive technological innovations that help solve the great challenges of humankind and support sustainable growth. A winning innovation must have a track record of practical applications and must accelerate further research.
The winners are leading researchers in their fields, typically at an active phase in their career. Two winners of the Millennium Technology Prize were subsequently awarded the Nobel Prize: Shuji Nakamura, who received the Millennium Technology Prize back in 2006, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2014, and Shinya Yamanaka, a stem cell researcher and the 2012 Millennium Technology Prize winner, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 2012.
– Awarded now for the seventh time, the Millennium Technology Prize has proved to be a trailblazer in science awards: it has consistently been awarded for innovations that have a solid scientific basis, practical applications and good prospects for further development. The prize has given these innovations global visibility and the attention of the science community, and has thereby supported the development of new solutions to the great challenges of mankind, says Juha Ylä-Jääski, D.Sc. (Tech.), President and CEO of Technology Academy Finland.
– The goals of the Millennium Technology Prize are very much the same as those of Aalto University. We are pleased to offer our best expertise for the evaluation of the scientific significance of the nominated innovations, says Professor Tuula Teeri, President of Aalto University.
A Thorough Evaluation Process
Nominations for the Millennium Technology Prize are screened and evaluated by an International Selection Committee composed of leading researchers representing different scientific disciplines and geographic areas. A key criterion in the evaluation is that the innovation has proved beneficial to a large part of humankind and that it promotes sustainable growth.
The International Selection Committee has eight members, and is always chaired by a Finnish member. A minimum of two members change in every prize round. The maximum term of a member is four rounds, or eight years. Aalto University Professor and Academician Riitta Hari is member of the Committee.