The awards, administered by Tel Aviv University, carry the themes Past Time Dimension, Present Time Dimension, and Future Time Dimension. This year’s presentations recognize achievements in paleoanthropology for the Past Time Dimension, print and electronic media for the Present Time Dimension, and cosmology and astronomy for the Future Time Dimension.
American photojournalist James Nachtwey, who has dedicated his life to documenting the apocalyptic events of our time: war, famine, critical social issues, and the plight of the disfranchised all over the world, shared the Present Time Dimension/Print and Electronic Media award with documentary producer Frederick Wiseman.
Nachtwey is described as having the eye of an artist and the instinct of a journalist to create images at which it may not be easy to look, but which are impossible to ignore. He currently lives in New York City.
The Past Time Dimension/Paleoanthropology winner, Prof. Michel Brunet, was noted for his 2002 discovery of the complete cranium of a new hominid, nicknamed Toumai, which is today considered the ancestor of humankind.
The winner of the Future Time Dimension/Cosmology and Astronomy section was Prof. John N. Bahcall who pioneered the development of neutrino astrophysics showing how, since 1964, neutrino detectors allow a deep look inside the sun.
“Even in the most tumultuous times, man’s greatest achievements have been the beacon of light to show us the way to peace and prosperity”, says international entrepreneur David. “The Dan David Prize is an ongoing quest to recognize and reward those who help us understand what we were in the past, to help us to live better today or in the present, and those who further our knowledge and dreams to improve the future.”
Dan David’s own achievements have themselves been quite remarkable. It was an interest-free $200,000 loan from a cousin in 1965 which gave him the chance he needed to develop his photographic inventions and technology patents – including the automatic photo booth – which have resulted in his becoming a successful businessman and multi-millionaire.
Now, David has a 90 percent market share of automatic photo booths found in stations, post offices, malls and arcades worldwide via his chairmanship of Photo-Me International which is listed on the London Stock Exchange.
Given his background, David understands the importance of getting an opportunity to develop an ability or talent, so he designed the prize with
a ’pay it forward’ element via which $100,000 of
each winner’s award establishes scholarships for exceptional young scholars or researchers to invigorate studies in the winner’s own field of achievement.
Calls for nominations for this year’s Dan David Prize resulted in responses from countries on four continents, Africa, Asia, Europe and North America. Many top academic institutions submitted candidates, including some of the world’s best-known scientists, public figures and institutions.
The winners have been selected from among the final nominees by independent review committees made up of distinguished members of the international academic and business community.