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Fact Sheet
NSF-funded Nobel Prize winners in science through 2013

October 22, 2013

The National Science Foundation (NSF) was established as an independent federal agency in 1950 "to promote the progress of science," largely by supporting fundamental (basic) research. To fulfill that mission, NSF today makes more than 10,000 new awards each year by using a time-tested process of merit review. The success of that process is reflected (though only in part) by the number of NSF-supported scientists recognized for their discoveries. NSF is particularly pleased that so many Nobel laureates have received NSF support at some point in their careers. In this way, NSF is the agent and advocate for the American people, investing public money in a more secure and productive future.

The impact of  these Nobelists and their NSF support extends beyond the research itself, into the network of people who support or benefit from that research. Many laureates serve as stewards of public funds by acting as reviewers of NSF proposals. Most inspire others to follow their lead, helping to create tomorrow's Nobel candidates. And all are reminders of the unpredictable benefits that can result from early investment at the frontiers of knowledge.

The American public is both the sponsor and the beneficiary of all the NSF-supported Nobel laureates listed here.

NSF-Funded Nobel Prize Winners

Physics

Chemistry

Medicine

Economics

Total

 

62

54

46

50

212


This information is based on NSF's Awards Database, which covers awards from the 1989 to present, and older information that predates electronic records at NSF. Information is available online for prior awards only if the award has been amended since 1989.

For details on these laureates and the discoveries that earned them Nobel Prizes, see http://nobelprize.org.

PHYSICS
1955 – Willis E. Lamb*, Polykarp Kusch*
1957 – Chen Ning Yang*
1959 – Owen Chamberlain*
1960 – Donald A. Glaser
1961 – Robert Hofstadter*
1963 – Eugene P. Wigner*
1964 – Charles H. Townes*
1967 – Hans A. Bethe*
1969 – Murray Gell-Mann*
1972 – Leon N. Cooper, J. Robert Schrieffer
1973 – Ivar Giaever*
1975 – James Rainwater
1976 – Burton Richter
1977 – Philip W. Anderson
1978 – Robert W. Wilson
1979 – Sheldon L. Glashow, Steven Weinberg
1980 – James W. Cronin
1981 – Arthur L. Schawlow
1982 – Kenneth G. Wilson
1983 – Subramanyan Chandrasekhar, William A. Fowler
1988 – Leon M. Lederman, Melvin Schwartz, Jack Steinberger
1989 – Norman F. Ramsey, Hans G. Dehmelt
1990 – Henry W. Kendall
1993 – Joseph H. Taylor Jr., Russell A. Hulse
1994 – Clifford G. Shull
1995 – Frederick Reines
1996 – David M. Lee, Douglas D. Osheroff, Robert C. Richardson
1997 – Steven Chu, William D. Phillips
1998 – Robert B. Laughlin, Horst L. Stormer, Daniel C. Tsui
2000 – Herbert Kroemer
2001 – Carl E. Wieman, Eric A. Cornell, Wolfgang Ketterle
2002 – Raymond Davis Jr., Riccardo Giacconi
2003 – Anthony J. Leggett
2004 – David J. Gross, H. David Politzer, Frank Wilczek
2005 – Roy J. Glauber, Theodor W. Hänsch
2006 – John C. Mather, George F. Smoot
2008 – Yoichiro Nambu
2011 – Saul Perlmutter, Brian P. Schmidt, Adam G. Riess #
2012 – Serge Haroche, David J. Wineland

CHEMISTRY
1951 – Glenn T. Seaborg*
1954 – Linus C. Pauling*
1960 – Willard F. Libby*
1961 – Melvin Calvin*
1965 – Robert B. Woodward*
1966 – Robert S. Mulliken*
1968 – Lars Onsager*
1972 – Christian B. Anfinsen*, Stanford Moore, William Stein
1974 – Paul J. Flory
1976 – William N. Lipscomb
1979 – Herbert C. Brown
1980 – Paul Berg, Walter Gilbert
1981 – Roald Hoffman
1983 – Henry Taube
1984 – Robert B. Merrifield*
1985 – Herbert A. Hauptman
1986 – Dudley R. Herschbach, Yuan T. Lee
1987 – Donald J. Cram
1989 – Sidney Altman, Thomas R. Cech
1990 – Elias J. Corey
1992 – Rudolph A. Marcus
1994 – George A. Olah
1995 – Paul J. Crutzen, Mario J. Molina, F. Sherwood Rowland
1996 – Robert F. Curl Jr., Richard E. Smalley
1997 – Paul D. Boyer
1998 – Walter Kohn, John A. Pople
1999 – Ahmed H. Zewail
2000 – Alan J. Heeger, Alan MacDiarmid
2001 – K. Barry Sharpless
2002 – John B. Fenn
2003 – Peter Agre, Roderick MacKinnon
2005 – Robert H. Grubbs, Richard R. Schrock
2008 – Osamu Shimomura, Martin Chalfie, Roger Y. Tsien
2009 - Thomas A. Steitz
2010 – Richard F. Heck, Ei-ichi Negishi
2012 – Brian K. Kobilka
2013 – Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt, Arieh Warshel

MEDICINE
1953 – Fritz Lipmann*
1958 – George W. Beadle*, Edward L. Tatum*, Joshua Lederberg
1959 – Severo Ochoa*, Arthur Kornberg*
1961 – Georg von Békésy*
1962 – Francis C. Crick*, James D. Watson*
1964 – Konrad Bloch*
1965 – Francois Jacob, Jacques Monod
1967 – George Wald*
1968 – Robert W. Holley, H. Gobind Khorana
1969 – Max Delbrück*, Salvador E. Luria*
1971 – Earl W. Sutherland, Jr.
1972 – Gerald M. Edelman
1974 – George E. Palade*
1975 – David Baltimore*, Renato Dulbecco, Howard M. Temin
1978 – Hamilton O. Smith
1979 – Allan M. Cormack*
1981 – Roger W. Sperry, Torsten N. Wiesel
1986 – Rita Levi-Montalcini
1987 – Susumu Tonegawa
1992 – Edmond H. Fischer
1993 – Richard J. Roberts, Phillip A. Sharp
1995 – Edward B. Lewis, Eric F. Wieschaus
1997 – Stanley B. Prusiner
2000 – Paul Greengard, Eric R. Kandel
2001 – Leland H. Hartwell
2002 – H. Robert Horvitz
2003 – Paul C. Lauterbur
2004 – Richard Axel
2006 – Andrew Z. Fire
2007 – Mario R. Capecchi
2009 – Jack W. Szostak
2013 – James E. Rothman, Randy W. Schekman

ECONOMICS
1970 – Paul A. Samuelson*
1972 – Kenneth J. Arrow*
1973 – Wassily Leontief
1975 – Tjalling C. Koopmans
1978 – Herbert A. Simon
1980 – Lawrence R. Klein
1981 – James Tobin
1982 – George J. Stigler
1983 – Gerard Debreu
1985 – Franco Modigliani
1986 – James M. Buchanan Jr.
1987 – Robert M. Solow
1992 – Gary S. Becker
1993 – Robert W. Fogel, Douglass C. North
1994 – John C. Harsanyi, John F. Nash*
1995 – Robert E. Lucas
1997 – Robert C. Merton
1998 – Amartya Sen
1999 – Robert A. Mundell
2000 – James J. Heckman, Daniel L. McFadden
2001 – George Akerlof, Michael Spence, Joseph Stiglitz
2002 – Daniel Kahneman, Vernon Smith
2003 – Robert C. Engle, Clive W. Granger
2004 - Finn E. Kydland, Edward C. Prescott
2005 – Robert J. Aumann, Thomas C. Schelling
2006 – Edmund S. Phelps
2007 – Leonid Hurwicz, Eric Maskin and Roger Myerson
2008 – Paul Krugman
2009 – Elinor Ostrom, Oliver E. Williamson
2010 – Peter A. Diamond, Dale Mortensen
2011 – Thomas J. Sargent, Christopher A. Sims
2012 – Alvin E. Roth and Lloyd S. Shapley
2013 – Eugene F. Fama, Lars Peter Hansen, Robert J. Shiller

* Received NSF support after receiving Nobel Prize.
# Received NSF support as graduate students who were part of an NSF grantee's group, as members of an NSF-supported team, and/or users of NSF-supported facilities; see the list of Physics laureates to learn how they were supported by NSF. 

-NSF-

Media Contacts
Jessica Arriens, NSF, (703) 292-2243, jarriens@nsf.gov

Related Websites
Nobel Prizes--The NSF Connection: http://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/nobelprizes/

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2014, its budget is $7.2 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives about 50,000 competitive requests for funding, and makes about 11,500 new funding awards. NSF also awards about $593 million in professional and service contracts yearly.

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Useful NSF Web Sites:
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NSF News: http://www.nsf.gov/news/
For the News Media: http://www.nsf.gov/news/newsroom.jsp
Science and Engineering Statistics: http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/
Awards Searches: http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/

 

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