Five of Ontario’s Brightest Minds Receive Prestigious Polanyi Prize for their Advancements in Research

Today, five of Ontario’s top university researchers will be awarded the 2016 Polanyi Prize for discoveries in such areas as neutron stars, the so-called diabolic loop, breast cancer treatment and improving sustainability in chemical industries.

“The Polanyi Prizes are a demonstration of the quality, depth and significance of the work Ontario university researchers are involved in,” says David Lindsay, President and CEO of the Council of Ontario Universities (COU).

“These bright young minds are making significant contributions to our shared understanding of the universe and efforts like these help position our province as a leader in the kind of research and innovation that changes our world – both now and into the future.”

Polanyi Prize Winners

From left to right: John Antoniadis; Cesar Sosa-Padilla; Kyle Biggar; Stephen Newman; Daniel Wright

Polanyi Prizes are given each year to a new generation of innovative researchers who are either continuing postdoctoral work or have recently gained a faculty appointment. Each of this year’s winners will receive $20,000 in recognition of their exceptional research in the fields of chemistry, economic science, literature, physics, and physiology/medicine.

The winners of the 2016 Polanyi Prizes and the areas of research for which they are being honoured are:

“Twenty-nine years of celebrating the achievements of the best of our rising generation of scholars has created a large cohort of outstanding university teachers and researchers in Ontario,” says Dr. John C. Polanyi, Nobel Laureate, University of Toronto. “They introduce themselves to me as ‘family’ wherever I go – these so-called Polanyi Prize winners. Their ability to never stop talking, nor stop discovering, is the province’s big return on investment. Long may it last.”

The Polanyi Prizes were created in 1987 by the Ontario government to celebrate the tremendous achievement of Dr. Polanyi in receiving the Nobel Prize, and are administrated by COU. The winners will be presented with their awards at a ceremony at the University of Toronto’s Massey College today at 11:30, and can be available for interviews.

For more information on the research recognized by the Polanyi Prizes, click here.

Additional quote:

“Recipients of the Polanyi Prizes represent the best university-based researchers across Ontario, and this year’s group is no exception. These individuals are strengthening our province’s reputation as a centre for excellence and innovation, while changing the way we approach key issues that directly impact Ontarians. It is truly a pleasure to honour and recognize these promising researchers and their discoveries.” — Deb Matthews, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development



COU is the voice of Ontario’s universities, promoting the value of education, research and innovation that leads to social, cultural and economic success.

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