Nobel Chemistry Prize Winner to Inspire Queen’s Students, Researchers

Nobel Prize medal

The co-recipient of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Chemistry will share his experience of research success and failure during a special event at Queen’s University on Sept. 25.

Columbia University Professor Dr. Martin Chalfie will tour labs and take part in a roundtable discussion with graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and early-career researchers as part of the Nobel Prize Inspiration Initiative.  

Members of the Queen’s community and the public can learn how research can change the world when Dr. Chalfie is joined by Dr. Arthur B. McDonald, co-recipient of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics, for a moderated talk at 2 pm at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts. The discussion titled “Failure, Persistence, and Joy: Finding the Right Balance for Research Success” will also feature Canada’s Chief Science Advisor Mona Nemer and be moderated by author and Globe and Mail columnist Andre Picard.

This is the first time the Nobel Prize Inspiration Initiative has come to Canada and Queen’s is one of only four Canadian universities hosting the event. (The others are Toronto, McGill, and Ryerson.)

The initiative is designed to get Nobel Laureates into closer contact with the worldwide scientific community, and especially younger researchers. Since 2010, the event has inspired scientists in more than 30 cities around the world, with visits to China, India, South Korea, Japan, Europe, Russia, Brazil, and the United States.

Dr. Chalfie received his Nobel for the discovery and development of the green fluorescent protein, GFP. With the aid of GFP, researchers have developed ways to watch processes that were previously invisible, such as the development of nerve cells in the brain or how cancer cells spread.

Dr. McDonald received his Nobel Prize in Physics for discovering that the very small and elusive particles called neutrinos, created in nuclear reactions in the sun, have mass.

Tickets to the public talk at The Isabel are free, but people must register in advance.