Nobel Night was hosted at UBCO December 12 with a large turnout from the Kelowna community. The event featured presentations on the Nobel prizes awarded in 2018, summarized below:
The Nobel prize in Physics was awarded to A. Ashkin for creation of light tweezers and to G. Mourou and D. Strickland for invention of a method to amplify laser beams. In the future lasers might be used to remove the space junk that continues to surround Earth.
The Nobel prize in Chemistry: F. H. Arnold was recognized for developing a method of directed evolution to produce enzymes; G. P. Smith and Sir G. P. Winter – for inventing a method to uncover genetic information of peptides and antibodies.
The Nobel prize in Physiology or Medicine: J.P. Allison and T. Honjo developed a technique to enhance immune response to cancer cells. While this method still cannot be implemented on the large scale and is efficient only to certain types of cancer, it is one more decisive step in the battle against the disease.
The Nobel Peace prize: D. Mukwege and N. Murad were distinguished for their efforts to raise awareness about sexual violence as means of war.
The Nobel prize in Economics was awarded to W.D. Nordhaus and P.M. Romer for mathematical proof that innovation is driven forward by necessity and that deterioration of environment would negatively impact the economy.
The Nobel night event manifests the spreading of scientific world view. Collectively we know more and have greater capabilities than we do individually; collaboration allows us to push the boundaries of discovery, and that is certainly worth commemorating.