In Conversation with Nobel Laureate Frances Arnold

December 5, 2018

In this edition of "The Interview", Fair Observer talks to Frances Arnold, the 2018 Nobel Prize laureate in chemistry.

Frances Arnold interviewThe Nobel Prize is arguably the most prestigious award a scientist can win. Established in memory of the late Swedish chemist, engineer and philanthropist Alfred Nobel in 1895, the prizes were first awarded in 1901 in five categories: chemistry, physics, medicine, peace and literature. In 1968, Sweden’s central bank established the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, which came to be known informally as the Nobel Prize in Economics.

Nobel Prize laureates are selected through a rigorous process that starts in September each year, when the Nobel Committee sends out confidential nomination forms to persons who are qualified to nominate individuals or organizations for a prize. These nominators include tenured professors, holders of corresponding chairs in at least six universities or university colleges, and the previous Nobel laureates. Every year, there is speculation and conjecture about the possible winners of the prize, but they rarely turn out to be accurate and the Swedish Academy usually surprises the world with its selections.

In 2018, the Nobel Prize for chemistry went to one British and two American scientists. Professor Frances Arnold is an American chemical engineer who won half of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry this year. Arnold was awarded the prize for her pioneering work on the “directed evolution of enzymes.”

In this edition of "The Interview", Fair Observer talks to Arnold about her scholarly work, her path to success and her life after being awarded the 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

The interview transcript is available here>