The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine on 27 July announced that Margot Lee Shetterly was chosen for their 2017 Communication Award for Books for Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race. The book and subsequent movie expanded public awareness of a critical, yet often overlooked, contribution to U.S. space exploration. Shetterly will receive the award in Washington, D. C., on 13 September.
On 20 June, the Asahi Glass Foundation announced the recipients of its 26th Blue Planet Prize, which is awarded to individuals or organizations for outstanding achievements in scientific research that aims to help solve global environmental problems. The foundation will award two prizes this year, one each to Hans J. Schellnhuber and Gretchen C. Daily. Schellnhuber, founder and leader of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Potsdam, Germany, was chosen for his role in establishing and leading the field of Earth system analysis. His efforts in this field were instrumental in developing the global warming “2-degree guardrail” agreed upon at the 2015 Paris Climate Conference. Daily’s significant contributions to the study of the effects of human activity on the biosphere and to improved understanding of biodiversity have helped businesspeople and policy makers worldwide to incorporate environmental impacts into their decision-making processes. She is a Bing Professor of Environmental Science in the Department of Biology, a senior fellow at the Stanford Woods Institute, and the director of the Center for Conservation Biology at Stanford University in Stanford, Calif. She is also the cofounder and faculty director of the Natural Capital Project. Schellnhuber and Daily will receive their prizes at an awards ceremony on 18 October in Tokyo, Japan, and will each give a commemorative prize lecture in Tokyo the next day.
The American Geosciences Institute in Alexandria, Va., recognized four outstanding projects by precollege students with their Special Award for Outstanding Performance in Earth Science at the 2017 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF) on 19 May in Los Angeles, Calif. Jean-Baptiste Flieller and Elias Suvanto of Gymnase Jean Sturm in Strasbourg, France, won the first-place prize for their project “Study and Modeling of Pressure and Temperature During a Geyser Eruption.” The second-place prize went to Neeraj Sakhrani from the Bronx High School of Science, Flushing, N.Y., for his project titled “Mathematically Cutting to the Bone: Solving Analytical Problems in ESR Dating the Paleolithic Site at Isimila, Tanzania.” The third-place prize was tied between Jared Goodwin, Hilo High School, Hilo, Hawaii (“Arsenic Contamination Through Tsunami Wave Movement in Hawaii: Investigating the Concentration of Heavy Metals in the Soil from the 1960 Hilo, Hawaii Tsunami”) and Azizah Dewi Suryaningsih, State Senior High School 1 Yogyakarta, Indonesia (“Bamboo Forest as a Natural Levee of Pyroclastic Flows in Merapi Volcano”). This is the 15th year that AGI has sponsored this award at the Intel ISEF.