Proceedings of the Balzan Prizewinners' Interdisciplinary Forum 2009 (Englisch)

Held on Thursday 19 November 2009 in Berne, the Forum was organized by the Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences and the Balzan Foundation "Prize".  (Download pdf)

After opening speeches by the President of the Swiss National Science Foundation, Dieter Imboden, and by the Chairman of the Balzan General Prize Committee, Salvatore Veca, the 2009 Balzan Prizewinners were presented by members of the General Prize Committee. The prizewinners then gave brief summaries of their careers and the work that won them the Prize: Terence Cave (UK, St John's College, Oxford) for Literature since 1500, Michael Grätzel (Switzerland-Germany, EPFL Lausanne) for the Science of New Materials, Brenda Milner (Canada-UK, McGill University, Montreal) for Cognitive Neurosciences and Paolo Rossi Monti (Italy, University of Florence) for the History of Science.
The talks by Milner, Cave, Grätzel and Rossi Monti were each followed by comments and questions by Swiss Academicians: Dominique de Quervain (Director, Division of Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Basel), Frédéric Tinguely (Director, Department of French Language and Modern Literature, University of Geneva), Frank Nüesch (Head, Department of Functional Polymers, Federal Laboratory for Materials Testing and Research) and Raphael Scholl (Institute of Philosophy, University of Berne).
To conclude, the President of the Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences, Peter Suter, invited members of the audience to ask the prizewinners questions on three basic themes: How do their works encourage dialogue between the humanities and the natural sciences? How might their findings influence the results obtained in other disciplines? What implications do these findings have for the future development of the humanities and the sciences?
The Forum and the proceedings are a result of the Agreements of collaboration signed by the International Balzan Foundation “Prize”  with  the Swiss Academies of  Arts and Sciences and the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei to spread knowledge of studies of international breadth in the sciences and the humanities.

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