2018 Killam Prize winners: Meet Canadian thinkers setting the standard for their fields
Every year, the Killam Prize of $100,000 is awarded to 5 worthy Canadian scholars
** This episode was originally published on Dec. 19, 2018.
Each year, up to five Killam Prizes of $100,000 each are awarded to Canadian scholars who have made "substantial and significant" contribution to their field of studies in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, health sciences or engineering.
The 2018 recipients with areas of study in linguistics, physics, medicine and film, are setting the standard for their fields both in Canada and internationally.
Innovation and progress are often romanticized as a series of eureka moments born out of dramatic twists and turns in the lab and in the world. But often the discoveries that lead to deep and profound change come as a result of years-long diligence, collaboration, and tiny steps forward. It's only upon looking back at a lifetime's worth of work that a scholar can see the giant leap forward in their work. The 2018 Killam Prize winners all share that in common: a deep and lasting impact on their field brought about through decades-long study and collaboration.
Meet the 2018 Killam Prize winners
Walter Herzog: Engineering
"My mother's words that education is everything and will open doors for life, ring true more so today than they did 50 years ago."
Vladimir Hachinski: Health Sciences
"I was at the edges of two fields and I dared to try and build bridges across them. The two big fields are stroke and dementia and I saw a lot of commonality from the beginning and I wasn't afraid to say, look, I see the obvious here."
James Pinfold: Natural Sciences
"Essentially, the standard model is complete but I don't believe it's the answer to everything. It can't be. It doesn't incorporate gravity, it doesn't explain dark matter which is the most matter in the universe. There must be a deeper underlying theory. "
Andre Gaudreault: Humanities
"The first goal I had was to develop the recognition of film studies so that it would be recognized in the university system and I think what I've done has helped a lot to do this."
Janet Werker: Social Sciences
"One of the things that's remarkable about language acquisition is that when we think about most kinds of learning, we imagine that there really isn't very much there and that, as a function of interacting with the world, we learn things. What's remarkable is that babies are actually prepared to learn any of the world's languages at birth."
The Killam Prizes are among the most distinguished research awards in Canada. They were established by the Killam Trusts and are awarded to Canadian scholars who have made a "substantial and significant contribution to their respective fields in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, health sciences or engineering."
The prizes are awarded by the Canada Council for the Arts which is Canada's public arts funder with a mandate to foster and promote the study, enjoyment, and production of the arts.
**This episode was produced by Naheed Mustafa.