The annual Nobel prizes are announced this week, and so far the winners have been a grab-bag of nationalities, ages and types of innovation. British researcher John Gurdon shared the prize for medicine Monday with Japanese scientist Shinya Yamanaka, who was born the year Gurdon made his first major cellular discovery. The two men won for their work in showing how cells can be reprogrammed to perform new functions.
And on Tuesday, two French and one American scientists won the prize for physics for their achievements in the field of quantum optics, which paves the way for the construction of extremely precise clocks.
Along with the title and the glory, each prize is worth a cool $1.1 million — which raises the question, who has the best odds of winning one?
According to a formula concocted by the BBC, the odds are on someone who is 60 years old, married, male, American and Harvard-educated.
By sifting through the statistics on past winners, the organization found that winners are also more likely to be born in the spring, cleanshaven and to not wear glasses.
Perhaps it’s time for the world’s economists — whose award will be announced Friday — to invest in some beard-clippers.
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