The Shaw Prize Award Ceremony 2020 Press Release

20 May 2021

Thursday, 20 May 2021. The 2020 Shaw Prize Award Presentation Ceremony was intended to be held in September 2020. However, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the in-person Award Ceremony was forced to be cancelled. After thorough consideration and preparation, the Shaw Prize Foundation has decided to turn the event online. The first-ever virtual Shaw Prize Award Ceremony was held today and was livestreamed via the Shaw Prize website. At the ceremony, the Honourable Mrs Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, Chief Executive of the HKSAR, People’s Republic of China, sent a congratulatory message to the Shaw Laureates.

The Shaw Laureates were selected by the international prize committee and the results were announced at the press conference on 21 May 2020.

Details of the 2020 Shaw Laureates are as follows:

The Shaw Prize in Astronomy is awarded to

Roger D Blandford
Luke Blossom Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences, and Professor of Physics and of Particle Physics and Astrophysics, Stanford University, USA

for his foundational contributions to theoretical astrophysics, especially concerning the fundamental understanding of active galactic nuclei, the formation and collimation of relativistic jets, the energy extraction mechanism from black holes, and the acceleration of particles in shocks and their relevant radiation mechanisms.Read More

The Shaw Prize in Life Science and Medicine is awarded in equal shares to

Gero Miesenböck
Waynflete Professor of Physiology and Director of the Centre for Neural Circuits and Behaviour, University of Oxford, UK,

Peter Hegemann
Hertie Professor for Neuroscience and Head of the Department of Biophysics, Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany and

Georg Nagel
Professor for Molecular Plant-Physiology, Physiological Institute – Department of Neuroscience, University of Würzburg, Germany

for the development of optogenetics, a technology that has revolutionized neuroscience. Read More

The Shaw Prize in Mathematical Sciences is awarded in equal shares to

Alexander Beilinson
David and Mary Winton Green University Professor, The University of Chicago, USA and

David Kazhdan
Professor of Mathematics, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

for their huge influence on and profound contributions to representation theory, as well as many other areas of mathematics. Read More

The Shaw Prize was established under the auspices of Mr Run Run Shaw in November 2002 to honour individuals, regardless of race, nationality, gender and religious belief, who have recently achieved significant breakthrough in academic and scientific research or applications and whose work has resulted in a positive and profound impact on mankind. The Shaw Prize consists of three annual prizes: Astronomy, Life Science and Medicine, and Mathematical Sciences, each bearing a monetary award of US$1.2 million. This is the nineteenth year that the Prize has been awarded.