The proliferation of prizes: Nobel complements and nobel surrogates in the reward system of science

Harriet Zuckerman
Columbia University
In the last two decades, prizes in the sciences have proliferated and, in particular, rich prizes with large honoraria. These developments raise several questions: Why have rich prizes proliferated? Have they greatly changed the reward system of science? What effects will such prizes have on scientists and on science? The proliferation of such prizes derives from marked limitations on the numbers and types of scientists eligible for Nobel prizes and consequent increases in the number of uncrowned laureate-equivalents. These would-be surrogates for Nobel prizes extend the reward system of science in its upper reaches but this change is not fundamental. The spread of rich prizes to new fields provides added incentives to potential winners, which has its own disutilities; it reinforces competitiveness, concern for priority and attendant secrecy, all this amplifying ambivalence toward the reward system in science. There may also be modest positive effects of such new awards in the form of heightened popular esteem for science and interest in it.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 64,261
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles


Added to PP index

Total views
34 ( #321,692 of 2,456,030 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #449,366 of 2,456,030 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes