Our current technological era, submerged by continuous discoveries and breakthroughs, has developed an appropriately new award: The Breakthrough Prize.
The motivation of such new award is well described at its webpage
Knowledge is humanity’s greatest asset. It defines our nature, and it will shape our future. …… The disciplines that ask the biggest questions and find the deepest explanations are the fundamental sciences. The Breakthrough Prizes honor important, primarily recent, achievements in the categories of Fundamental Physics, Life Sciences and Mathematics. The prizes were founded by Sergey Brin and Anne Wojcicki, Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan, and Yuri and Julia Milner. Committees of previous laureates choose the winners from candidates nominated in a process that’s online and open to the public. Laureates receive $3 million each in prize money. They attend a televised award ceremony designed to celebrate their achievements and inspire the next generation of scientists. As part of the ceremony schedule, they also engage in a program of lectures and discussions. Those that go on to make fresh discoveries remain eligible for future Breakthrough Prizes.
Among the first 11 recipients of the Breakthrough Prize in Life Science Research (all receiving $3 million each for Groundbreaking Achievements) is Prof. Eric S. Lander, one of the leaders of the Human Genome Project, the effort to map the entire human genetic code, founder of the Broad Institute biomedical and genomic research center often described as “Disneyland, a playground for scientists.”
Lander has been a relevant player of the MITOPENCOURSEWARE at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he conducts a crash course in Biology teaching the story of the greatest scientific revolution of the last century, and puts the details on the context of that story.
Links to Lander courses:
Introduction to Biology: http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/biology/7-012-introduction-to-biology-fall-2004/;
Video Lectures: http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/biology/7-012-introduction-to-biology-fall-2004/video-lectures/;
Fundamental of Biology: http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/biology/7-01sc-fundamentals-of-biology-fall-2011/index.htm;
Recombinant DNA: http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/biology/7-01sc-fundamentals-of-biology-fall-2011/recombinant-dna/
Congratulations to Dr Lander for his scientific achievements and his dedication to support next generation of scientists and motivate their pursuit of science as a career.