On October 23, 2017 was hold a meeting of Michael Nobel and Peter Nobel (Co-founders of the Nobel Charitable Foundation) with RosNOU students and the press which was organized by Student’s Scientific Society and the Student Council of RosNOU.
The Rector of RosNOU Vladimir Zernov welcomed everyone and introduced our guests. RosNOU was also visited by the ambassador of the company "Nobel SustainabilityTrust", Stina Nordlander and Nikolai Zhiltsov (The Rector of the International Law Institute).
The meeting was dedicated to the establishment of a new Nobel Prize — in the field of sustainable development (Nobel Sustainability Award), including the field of alternative energy. According to Peter Nobel, this prize doesn’t apply directly to the Nobel Prize and will be paid out of a separate fund.
«10 years ago we think of renewable energy, but now we are talking about environmental protection (substituting energy) , — notes Michael Nobel. The size of the award is 100 thousand dollars, but it does not really matter, because the prestige of this award is the only main thing about it, which serves as an indicator that its owner really cares about the environment. I consider it necessary to add that the Fields Medal is only 15,000 Canadian dollars, but it is the most prestigious achievement in the field of mathematics».
According to Michael Nobel, the first prize is planned to be awarded at the end of next year, for this reason such cities as Paris, Shanghai and Moscow will compete each other for the right to conduct the ceremony. The joint committee will be established on the basis of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, it will include representatives of 46 universities from 39 countries.
«Most of the universities we contacted had departments of sustainable development, and they took the idea of such a prize with great enthusiasm," said Michael Nobel. – Participation has already been confirmed by Lund University (Sweden) and Vienna Technical University (Austria). I hope that the Russian New University will also participate in the project. Members of the committee will collect and process data from around the world, and will do this completely independently. Peter and I aren’t on the committee, because we have purely administrative positions. »
Representatives of the Nobel family answered questions from the press and students during this meeting.
Russian Newspaper: The most prestigious «Global Energy» prize is also presented in Russia. What is the difference between your prizes?
Peter Nobel: Unfortunately, I never heard of this award before. However, I would like to reiterate: it is important that we want to stimulate research in the field of replaceable energy and give young talented scientists our material support.
Michael Nobel: For example, Nobel Prizes in physics and chemistry are awarded for fundamental research. We want to note those who seek to apply their applications to their developments and help them to translate their ideas, which ultimately should be aimed at making people's lives better.
Igor Dorofeev (2nd year student of the Faculty of Law at RosNOU): The introduction of the Nobel Prize in Economics caused a massive public outcry and much part of the public condemned such a decision. Will the introduction of the prize on alternative energy increase the criticism of the Nobel Prize?
Peter Nobel: I don’t think that something like this may happen. Actually, this is not a Nobel Prize, but it is a separate award (Sustainability Award), so it will have its own committee and will be paid out of another fund. As for the Nobel Foundation, he gave his consent to the awarding of this prize.
Igor Knyazev (4th year student of the Faculty of Law, chairman of the Student Council of RosNOU): As far as I know, after this meeting you are planning to visit Tambov. Why did you choose Tambov as the main destination of your trip?
Michael Nobel: There are several reasons for this: firstly, Russian representative of the Fund for Sustainable Development lives in Tambov (Mr. Tyutyunnik), who provides us with comprehensive support, secondly – there will pass the XXX congress of Nobelists, and thirdly – It has the Museum of Nobel Dynasty, which exhibits facts related to the Nobel family collected for thirty years already. In addition, Tambov sponsors are providing a large support to our fund.
Yulia Annenkova (head of RosNOU press-service): Are there any Russian universities that can be nominated for the prize?
Michael Nobel: As you know, the leading places in world rankings are occupied by high schools of the Anglo-Saxon system. But each country has its own good universities, for example, the Moscow State University. Other Russian universities also want to present something remarkable, we just welcome it.
Maxim Libo (3rd year student of the Faculty of Humanitarian Technologies RosNOU): Which of the existing fields of science are worthy to be included to the list of nominations for the new prize?
Michael Nobel: There are dozens of spheres whose representatives can receive the prize. The spectrum is not limited to the submitted nominations. The Nobel Prize has existed since 1987 and the number of nominations is only growing. You need only to offer something and the committee will gladly consider it.
Alina Shipsheva (1-year student of the Faculty of Law of RosNOU): As far as I know, you are strongly involved in various educational programs. How would you characterize Russian education?
Michael Nobel: Russian science and education are well evaluated in the world. But 52% of Nobel Prizes are awarded to scientists from the United States. The American education system is built in such a way where people are ready to ask questions, learn from their mistakes and understand that there is nothing wrong with making it.
Igor Knyazev: I have a question for Stina – do you think that higher education is necessary to be successful?
Stina Nordlander: Of course, higher education is necessary for a good career. I graduated only from school, but I was lucky. I am very happy to be where I am now, and I am happy to work in this field. But next year I'm going to university.