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Israelis, Jews and winning international awards

Recently we were informed of four more Jewish winners who won the prize in the fields of medicine, economics and physics. In addition to the Nobel, in other prizes from the world of science, the rate of Israeli and Jewish winners is impressively high

Nobel Prize Coin for Chemistry. Source: Adam Baker.
Nobel Prize Coin for Chemistry. source: Adam baker.

By Shay Shemesh

The relative share of Israelis among Nobel Prize winners is one of the highest in the world in relation to the number of residents. In the 70 years of the existence of the State of Israel, 12 Israelis won the Nobel Prize, all of them of Jewish origin. Israel is the country with the second highest number of winners on the continent of Asia, and it holds about 28% of all the winnings on the continent. The twelve winners from Israel constitute close to 4% of all the winnings - a rate considerably higher than the relative percentage of citizens of the State of Israel in the world's population (0.1%). However, even though a large part of the Jewish people live in Israel, the proportion of non-Israeli Jewish Nobel Prize winners far exceeds the proportion of Nobel Prize winners from Israel.

The first Nobel Prize in Israel was won by Shi Agnon in 1966 in the field of literature, the last prize was won by Aryeh Warshel and Michael Levitt in 2013 in the field of chemistry. Between his life Dan Shechtman discovered the quasi-crystal; Daniel Kahneman combined insights from psychological research into economic science; Avraham Hershko and Aharon Chachanover discovered a cyclical process in which a cell allows the breakdown of proteins; Yisrael Uman did wonders to explore the theory of games; Ada Yonat contributed to the understanding of the structure and function of the ribosome.

The distribution of the Israeli winners by subject:

Chemistry: six winners out of 171, which make up about 4% of all winners in this field.

Hello: Three Nobel Prize winners out of 103 which make up about 3% of all the people who win in this field. 129 received the award of which 26 organizations and 103 individuals.

Economics: Two Nobel Prize winners out of 76, which make up about 3% of all winners in this field.

Literature: 112 Nobel Prize winner out of 1, which is about XNUMX% of all winners in this field.

Contrary to what is commonly thought, Israel is only in 13th place in the world in the ratio of prize winners to the size of the population, in first place is Sweden. Israel is in 16th place in absolute number of winners, in first place by a considerable margin is the USA, where about a third of the prize winners are, of course, Jews. However, it must be remembered that Israel has only existed for 70 years out of the 117 years of the award's existence.

If we want to perhaps measure the potential of the State of Israel, we can take as a measure the total number of Jewish winners in general. About 24% of all the winners in the world are Jews, more than a hundred times their share in the population, in the 21st century the rate rose to 28.5%. Only recently were we informed of four more Jews who won the prize in the fields of medicine, economics and physics (Michael Rosbash, Barry Beirish, Richard Thaler and Rainer Weiss). You will be surprised to find out that even in other prestigious awards, the percentage of Jews is just as high.

As of today, 201 people have won the Nobel Prize and at least one of their parents was Jewish. The first Jew to win a Nobel Prize was Adolf von Bayer in 1905, he won the prize in chemistry for his work on organic dyes and hydroaromatic compounds. 24% of all individual prize winners were Jews, more than a hundred times their relative share in the population, this figure does not include winning organizations. When in the 21st century the rate rose to 30%. After the end of World War II and the establishment of the State of Israel, the percentage of Jews among the winners almost doubled. This fact is especially amazing in light of the destruction of six million Jews in the Holocaust, among them scientists, writers and economists of the first rank.

When broken down by fields, it was found that about 40% of all winners of the economics prize are Jews, among them Leonid Horvitz who also stars as the winner at the oldest age - 90. The highest number of Jews who have received a Nobel Prize is in the field of medicine. In the fields of spirituality, peace and literature, the percentage of Jewish winners drops to 12%.

The country that has the largest amount of winners is the USA. More than a third of the American prize winners are Jews, who make up only about 1.7% of the country's population. Out of five cases in which father and son both won the Nobel Prize, two are from Jewish families, Niels and Aga Bohr and Arthur and Roger Kornberg. In 2004, no less than seven Jews won the prize.

If you thought that the Jews' novel was unique to the Nobel Prize, then prepare for a surprise. The percentage of Jewish winners of the Fields Medal, the Kyoto Prize and the Turing Prize stands at an astonishing 25% for each of the prizes.

No less than 38% of the winners of the US National Medal of Science were Jewish, as were 42% of the winners of the Busher Prize for Mathematics and about 50% of the winners of the Steele Medal for Lifetime Achievement in the same field. In the medal of the French Academy of Sciences, the rate of Jewish winners is 53%, and the list goes on. In the field of computer science, the percentage of Jewish winners of the six prestigious awards (Turing, Shannon, Newman, Godel, Kanalakis, Nevanlina) ranges from 33% to 56%. In the Pulitzer Prize for Literature and the Clark Prize for Economics, the rate of Jewish winners is close to 60%. Almost half of the world chess champions are Jews, 20% of the billionaires in the USA and a disproportionate amount in the fields of culture, music, cinema and theater.

After reviewing the statistics of the many award winners, we will recall that the proportion of Jews in the human mix is ​​decreasing year by year. Today the Jews make up no more than 0.2% of the world's population. In conclusion, the honor of the Persians is in its place, but the crowning glory of Jewish success in modern times is undoubtedly the establishment and prosperity of the State of Israel.


25 תגובות

  1. Yosef
    A large majority of the Jews who won the Nobel Prize are not religious and have not studied any Talmud or Gemara.

    There is no reason not to think that the reason is simply a combination of genetics and a culture that values ​​education - and their mutual influence!

  2. In contrast, the Spanish concept is not fond of "mountain removal" but "Mount Sinai", which means relying on existing knowledge, but as usual people contain internal contradictions within themselves and that's fine - science also contains groundbreaking innovation combined with existing knowledge. For example, Rabbi Ovadia opposed gossip per se and was called "Mount Sinai" and is the champion of gossip - although not in Gemara but in Halacha. I don't know another rabbi who would have declared that the Ethiopians are Jews for all intents and purposes, who would have been able to prove it, and that everyone would have accepted his ruling and sent his home to found a university for ultra-Orthodox women. Of course, the seculars, and I am among them, remember him from phrases like "Go outside to Shulamit Aloni."

  3. Studying Gemara and Flapol - the factors that hinder science today, in my estimation, have a part in the issue of receiving Nobel prizes.
    The novelist Professor Israel Oman has already shown that all the treatises in the Talmud can be analyzed according to game theory, meaning that the rationale of the speculation is similar to game theory.
    Game theory plays a large part in today's science, for example in deep learning - generative adversary networks and reinforcement learning. That is, it is a successful study concept.
    The Ashkenazi concept in which the filpol in itself and its strength is a goal - is called in the orthodox Ashkenazi concept "Oker Harim". This advantage is not strong today because science offers an arena for gossip for everyone, and the weight of other nations in science is increasing. If secular Judaism - the one that is open to the world, does not renew its face, there will be no advantage. On the contrary - it breeds racism, and a sense of superiority which are the recipe for failure.

  4. א
    The genotype does not change so easily...
    There has to be a tangible pressure on the phenotype to have any effect on the genotype.

  5. In connection with the claim that flew in the air in the discussion as if the level of intelligence can be determined, and even attributed to a genetic factor, according to the degree of economic success of a company or country.
    It is worth noting that this is nonsense, for example the Arabs led for years in education in the development of mathematics and medicine over Europe. If the reason for a company's success were genetics, we would not see such reversals.
    What's more, the brain is extremely flexible and can be so influenced by environmental factors that even if there are genetic factors, they are probably null in sixty

  6. When you look at the winning graph of Jews

    There is an unfounded suspicion that in the years 1983,1974,1956,1948, XNUMX, XNUMX, XNUMX - there is a sharp drop in the average Jewish Nobel prize winning graph corresponding to the Israeli wars (+ year) = but the Six Day War does not lead to a sharp drop but a minor one.
    And of course a decrease in the number of winners during and between the world wars.

    On the other hand, the information revolution (which requires, among other things, limited access to resources for its development) jumps the graph.
    It is also possible that the phenomenon is only circumstantial (there is no research basis)

  7. rival
    Without going too deep into the subject - I guess so.
    You, for example, live in a different environment than Ahmed Abu Mahmoud the Bedouin, don't you? 🙂

  8. Below is my opinion on the subject. First of all, in Europe everyone was conducted in guilds of professions, to which the Jews were not accepted. For example, carpenters and farmers, etc. These were the "old" professions and it was difficult for Jews to enter the old professions. But the new professions had almost no guild that prevented the Jews from entering them, therefore in the new professions such as teachers, bankers, businessmen, etc. the Jews flourished. In addition, if a Christian was a successful person, he immediately became the top of the top-... a priest, his genes went and did not survive. On the other hand, when he was a successful Jew, he was immediately looked for a match, the rabbi's daughter or a community businessman, and of course the gardens were preserved. Even disturbances in the Jews only "improved" the genes of the remaining ones, when on average the most successful ones survived. Unfortunately, all of this is changing in Israel when we have an delusional Minister of Education who does not believe in evolution and he and his cheerleaders prefer religion and the stupidity of not learning from the core professions. I am sorry for the scientific deterioration in Israel where the Jews, instead of being at the top of the top, are less successful than the Jews in many other places. sad.
    Please respond gently

  9. rival:
    "If it's not a genetic issue, what explains the data that appears in the article anyway?" - If it's not genetic, then the matter is environmental...

  10. The Jews have always been a minority and as a minority he had to study more and work more..... Also all the stupid Jews didn't read the map and the wise ones always ran away in time
    And so little by little the praise of the Jews was carried out....

  11. It is not true that blacks are better at sports than Jews. Fact, how many times has Maccabi Tel Aviv won the European Cup?

    Oh ..

    Good -

    If the Jews do not genetically surpass the blacks in IQ, then the blacks are the genetically superior race, since there is no doubt that they are taller, stronger and more agile than the Jews. And not just the blacks.

    And those who doubt this, should look at the World Cup games next year, and count the Jews playing. You can count them on the fingers of one hand, even on one finger.

    Actually it's not either.

  12. Maya, you describe a utopian world that exists only in science fiction books. I'm sorry, there is a reason why they are starving despite hundreds of billions of dollars in donations from the West since the end of colonization, and in contrast, look at how China, Japan and South Korea have progressed from nothing to empires and how South Africa and Zimbabwe have been deteriorating since the end of apartheid.
    Again it's true it's sad and unfair but this is life and it's unfair even in nature the strong wins. Yes, there can be a black Einstein and a white autistic, but here we are talking about a statistical average and that is what comes out whether you want it or not, and nothing except genetic engineering may be able to change that

  13. Nostradamus,
    It's all good, there are differences. You have no way of measuring them under the existing conditions. Who prevents blacks from studying in Africa? I don't know, maybe their obsession is not to starve first. When women are only allowed to set foot in academia for the last few decades and that too while being discriminated against, you can't judge their IQ (another parameter invented by white male criteria) fairly right now.
    By the way, surprisingly, I largely agree with you: there are differences. But these differences are between people. And the study and the personal attitude should indeed be for every person. Just as it is better not to assume that a black person is good at basketball just because he is black, it is also better not to assume that he is an idiot. It's just human interest. You miss a lot of options that way. And beyond that, even if he seems like an idiot to you, it might be worth understanding what he is good at. I have never met a person who was not good at anything and could not offer a new perspective on anything, so let's give it a chance. We also don't have to judge everything with our standard tools of IQ and only if you are good at science then you are worth something.
    On the same weight, let's not get into people's choices of who to spend their lives with and with whom to have children.
    Sounds like a world I'd like to live in. to you?

  14. Enough said, I'm not a racist because I don't hate other races and I'm not afraid of them, on the other hand I'm aware of the physical and mental differences between the races, good and bad, and precisely the recognition of the differences can begin to lead to some kind of change in learning and teaching methods and behavior as well as in adapted medicine, but not in the way of discrimination against The more intelligent population. Ignoring the problem will not make it go away, and trying to fix it at someone else's expense will lead to disaster

  15. Otherwise, why do they lower the bar a lot for blacks and Latinos and make it very difficult for Asians and Jews in US universities? Creating an imbalance will lead to disaster

  16. Maya, who discriminates against Arabs in Arab countries? And the blacks in Africa? Who prevents them from studying? Maybe the real reason is because their IQ level is much lower? 65-70 for black Africans, 85 for Latinos and Arabs, 100 for whites, 105 for Asians like the Japanese and Koreans and 110-115 for Ashkenazi Jews.

    Enough has been broken, so call science racist, Syrian scientific facts have no prejudices, blacks are better at physical sports than whites or do you deny that too? This is regressive thinking that will return humanity to the Middle Ages.

    Raphael, you are right, I forgot to mention that, because of course, contrary to the regressive nonsense, there is a difference between the sexes and the races, there is no such thing as everyone being equal.

  17. Wow! How crazy is this! It is as if there are more rewards that are relevant to learning among populations that learn more and are discriminated against less by the outside society when it comes to learning. It must be something genetic...

  18. Nostradamus you are "definitely" neither a xenophobe nor a racist. Maybe read what you wrote again and decide again if you are not racist.
    You analyze the future changes and based on the future results you determine that it is due to the mixing of the Ashkenazim with the white population in the USA and the mixing of the Ashkenazim with the eastern population in Israel. To remind you, it hasn't happened yet, but you already have conclusions based on a perception of racism. If that's not racist then what is?
    Maybe instead of running away from defining yourself as a racist you will simply learn to accept yourself? You will be much better in life if you accept yourself as you are and it will also be easier for your environment if they could simply categorize it without resistance from you as you like to do to others.

  19. I am neither a xenophobe nor a racist, but it should be especially emphasized because this is a statistical article that the absolute majority of the Jewish winners are of Ashkenazi origin, therefore there are more winners in the USA where there are about 5 million Jewish Ashkenazim compared to about 2.5 million Jewish Ashkenazim in Israel. Scientific facts do not lie and are not racist or xenophobic.
    Unfortunately, in the decades to come, the number of Jewish winners will decrease and will be the average of the white population in the USA and even less so even in Israel, and this is because of the rapid assimilation in the USA and essentially the disappearance of the Jews, especially the Ashkenazim (except for the ultra-Orthodox, but they only study Torah) and the mixing of Ashkenazi Jews with Mizrahim in Israel. Incidentally, this is one of the reasons for the steep decline in Israeli academia, as well as, of course, the Arab sector counted in the statistics

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