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Future Insight Prize

Stimulating scientific and technological progress in the areas of health, nutrition, and energy.


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Creating the vision for ambitious dream products of global importance for humankind.

REALIZING THE DREAMS FOR A BETTER TOMORROW

At the occasion of its 350th anniversary, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany is sponsoring the Future Insight Prize to stimulate innovative solutions to solve some of humanities greatest problems and to realize the dreams for a better tomorrow in the areas of health, nutrition and energy. The Future Insight Prize will put the vision for ambitious dream products of global importance for humankind into the world and will trigger curiosity and creativity worldwide on how to make this vision a reality. We intend to give out up to EUR 1,000,000 annually for the next 35 years to incentivize people whose work has enabled significant progress towards making this vision a reality via discovering new ground-breaking science or via development of enabling technologies.

With this award, we aim to stimulate groundbreaking science and innovative development of key products or technologies, to bring meaningful visions to life for the benefit of humanity.

Dr. Stefan Oschmann

Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany

We can make it happen

The Future Insight Prize puts the vision for ambitious dream products of global importance for humankind into the world and triggers curiosity and creativity on how to make these visions a reality.

The Prize will be awarded annually from 2019 onwards to honor outstanding achievements in science & technology towards a ground‐breaking innovation important for the future of humanity in the areas:

  • Health - Pandemic Protection (2019)
  • Health - Multi Drug Resistance (2020)
  • Nutrition - Food Generator (2021)
  • Energy - CO2 Conversion (2022)

Selection Process

  • A Jury comprising experts from all over the world will identify suitable candidates for the Future Insight Prize
  • Additionally, proposals for Future Insight Prize candidates can be sent to the Jury (no self-nominations)
  • Amongst all of these candidates, the Jury will select the top individuals whom are invited to submit a formal application for the prize
  • The Jury will evaluate these applications and select the winner of the Future Insight Prize
  • The winner will be publicly announced and present their research at the Future Insight Conference

Testimonials

“The Future Insight Prize is great because it sets a grand challenge and seeks a solution to societies greatest future needs.” Prof. Dr. Daniel Nocera - Harvard University

"The Future Insight Prize is great because it will foster scientific innovation in areas critical to humanity's future.“ Professor Martin Jonikas - Princeton University

“The Future Insight Prize in Pandemic Protection is great because it is a clear expression of commitment to society and global health.” Dr. Sir Michael Jacobs – Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

"The Future Insight Prize is great because it shows a 350-year old company is thinking about the next 350 years.” Isha Datar – CEO New Harvest

The Future Insight Prize builds a network of innovators to enable the dreams for a better tomorrow.

Dr. Ulrich Betz

Vice President, Department Head Innovation & Entrepreneurship Incubator
Future Insight Prize Inventor and Manager

Future Insight Prize Jury


Jury Member
Affiliation  Jury Member Affiliation   
Angela Belcher Massachusetts Institute of Technology John Gyapong University of Health & Allied Sciences  
Benjamin List Max-Planck-Institute for Coal Research Kara Bren University of Rochester  
Camille Delebecque Afineur Kenneth Drazan GRAIL  
Christina Smolke Stanford University Lolke Sijtsma University of Wageningen  
Christopher Milne Tufts Martin Jonikas Princeton University  
Clifford P. Kubiak UC San Diego Mary Voytek NASA  
Daniel Bausch London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Matt Rosseinsky University of Liverpool  
Daniel Nocera Harvard University Michael Jacobs RFL NHS  
Daniel Zajfman Weizmann Institute of Science Nadia Tornieporth CEPI  
David Solit Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Nancy Cox Vanderbilt University  
Dean Radin California Institute of Integral Studies Peidong Yang UC Berkeley  
Deborah O‘Neil Novabiotics Peter Hotez Baylor College of Medicine  
Donald Cleveland UCSD Ron Fouchier Erasmus University  
Eileen Farnon Pasteur Institute Rudolf Aebersold ETH Zürich  
Ferdi Schütz Max-Planck-Institute for Coal Research Scott Spangler IBM  
Hans-Joachim Zeiler Creative Therapeutics Shinichi Akaike NISTEP Japan  
Harald Seifert University of Cologne Shyam Sankar Palantir  
Isha Datar New Harvest Stefan Oschmann Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany  
Jake Yeston AAAS / Science Stewart Cole École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne  
James Le Duc University of Texas Medical Branch Subhanu Saxena Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation  
Jeff Boeke NYU Langone Health Tom Knight Ginkgo Bioworks  
Jean-Marie Lehn  College de France  Ulrich Betz Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany  
Jeremy Nicholson Imperial College London Ulrich Wiesner Cornell University  
Joachim Frank  Columbia University  Yang Shao-Horn Massachusetts Institute of Technology  
Joao Monteiro Nature Medicine      

FAQs

What are the Future Insight Prize's selection criteria?

What are the Future Insight Prize's selection criteria?

  • Has the recipient’s work provided important breakthroughs to enable a realization of the dream product?
  • Is the recipient’s work of utmost scientific quality recognized by top peer review journals?
  • Will the recipient be able to make good use of the prize money to advance research in this area?

Who will receive the Future Insight Prize?

Who will receive the Future Insight Prize?

The Future Insight Prize will be given out to an individual whose work has contributed to laying the scientific and technological basis for solving some of humanities greatest problems in the areas of health, energy, and nutrition. Their work will help to realize the vision of a dream product of importance for the survival of humanity in the future. In 2019, the Future Insight Prize will be given out in the area of health (dream product pandemic protector), in 2020 also in the area of health (dream product multi drug resistance breaker), in 2021 in the area of nutrition (dream product food generator), and in 2022 in the area of energy (dream product CO2 to fuel converter).

How will the winner of the Future Insight Prize be awarded?

How will the winner of the Future Insight Prize be awarded?

The winner of the Future Insight Prize will receive up to EUR 1,000,000 in funding for their research along with the Future Insight Prize trophy and a keynote lecture at forthcoming Future Insight Conferences or comparable events.

How often will the Future Insight Prize be awarded?

How often will the Future Insight Prize be awarded?

Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany intends to give out the Future Insight Prize annually for the next 35 years. As soon as a dream product has been realized, the Future Insight Prize for this category will stop.

What is the vision of the Future Insight Prize after 2022?

What is the vision of the Future Insight Prize after 2022?

The Future Insight Prize will continue to be given out supporting research laying important foundations for the realization of the four published dream products - Pandemic Protector, Multi-Drug Resistance Breaker, Food Generator, and CO2 to Fuel Converter - until they have been realized. In addition, new visionary dream products might be announced. 

Do you have additional questions?

Do you have additional questions?

Please send an email to futureinsightprize@emdgroup.com. 

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