Dame Jocelyn Bell-Burnell, Astrophysics professor at the University of Oxford and former President of the ALLEA Member Academy Royal Society of Edinburgh, has been awarded the Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics in recognition of her discovery of radio pulsars, widely considered to be one of the greatest astronomical discoveries of the twentieth century. The prize also acknowledges Dame Jocelyn’s inspiring scientific leadership over the last five decades.
The award comes five decades after Jocelyn Bell-Burnell made the discovery of the pulsar back in 1967. Dame Jocelyn has announced that she will donate the $3 million prize to the Institute of Physics, in order to fund graduate students from under-represented groups who wish to engage in physics research.
Dame Jocelyn will be recognised at the 2019 Breakthrough Prize ceremony on Sunday, November 4, 2018, at NASA’s Ames Research Center in California, United States.
Jocelyn Bell-Burnell is also Fellow of the Royal Society, ALLEA Member Academy.
About the Breakthrough Prize
The Breakthrough Prize, known as the world’s largest science prize, recognises the world’s top scientists with a prize of US$3 million, and is presented in the fields of Life Sciences, Fundamental Physics and Mathematics. Previous recipients of the award include Stephen Hawking, seven CERN scientists attributed the discovery of the Higgs boson, and the LIGO collaboration that detected gravitational waves.
ALLEA is a partner of the Breakthrough Prize since 2017 and has sought to increase awareness of the opportunity to nominate great scientists and mathematicians on our website and other communication channels. We share the common goal of promoting a culture where science and scholarship can thrive, and where scientists who significantly contribute to our collective understanding of the world should be recognised.