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EYE ON CHINA
50 young scientists awarded with the inaugural XPLORER PRIZE
On 20th September 2019, a list of 50 young researchers was announced to have won a non-governmental award to encourage them in their work in science and technology.

50 out of 1335 applicants were specially selected for the prestigious XPLORER PRIZE this year. Candidates had to be aged 45 or below and are currently working full-time in mainland China to qualify. The award aimed to empower more young scientists to take more risks into the unknown and encourage them to further their research in science and innovative technologies.

According to the organizers, each prize recipient will receive a total of three million Chinese Yuan, which amounts to approximately USD423,348 over a period of five years.

Applicants were judged by more than 350 experts from various fields, among them were 100 academicians form the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Chinese Academy of Engineering. This diversity was to ensure impartiality in the judging process.

Judges adopted the “Rising Star” criteria in the review process, thereby, under the same conditions the younger applicants will have the same fighting chance. Nine of the 50 winners were aged 35 and under, demonstrating the purpose of the award in attracting and motivating young scientists to conduct research.

The award was divided into two board categories, Fundamental Science and Frontier Technologies. Fundamental Science encompasses sub-categories such as life sciences, astronomy and geoscience, mathematics and physics, and chemistry and new materials. While Frontier Technologies include information technology and electronics, energy and environmental protection, advanced manufacturing, transportations and construction, and cross-disciplinary technology.

The XPLORER PRIZE is initiated by Ma Huateng (Pony Ma), Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Tencent and founder of the Tencent Foundation, and Professor Rao Yi of Peking University together with other well-known scientists: Chen Ning Yang, Mao Shude, He Huawu, Wu Hequan, Li Peigen, Chen Shiyi, Zhang Yitang, Shi Yigong, Gao Wen, Xie Kechang, Cheng Taining, Xie Xiaoliang and Pan Jianwei. Initial funding for the award is provided by Tencent Foundation, which has promised to allocate one billion Chinese yuan (about 141 million USD) to this cause.

The presentation ceremony will be held in Beijing, China, on 2nd November 2019.

Source: Xplorerprize.org, Sciencenet.cn, translated by Xiao Ling

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