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Announcement of the 2019 Kyoto Prize Laureates

Chemist, Astrophysicist and Stage Director

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Kyoto/London – The Inamori Foundation is pleased to announce the laureates of the 2019 Kyoto Prize, an international award presented to individuals who have contributed significantly to the scientific, cultural, and spiritual betterment of humankind. The Kyoto Prize Presentation Ceremony will be held in Kyoto, Japan on November 10.

Each laureate will receive a diploma, the Kyoto Prize medal (20K gold), and prize money of 100 million yen (approx. 818,000 €). This year’s Prize goes to the following three individuals: Dr. Ching W. Tang, IAS Bank of East Asia Professor at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology as well as Professor Emeritus at the University of Rochester; Dr. James Gunn, Emeritus Eugene Higgins Professor of Astrophysical Sciences at Princeton University; and Mrs. Ariane Mnouchkine, stage director and founder of the Théâthre du Soleil.

Dr. Ching W. Tang

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Dr. Tang studied light emission processes in electrically-driven organic materials and invented a new device structure in which two carefully-selected materials were stacked, alloweing for high-efficiency light emission at low drive voltages. This pioneering work has led to the practical use of organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) and their widespread application in displays and lighting.

Dr. James Gunn

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Dr. James Gunn led the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, which produced a three-dimensional digital cosmic map encompassing a broad region. He played a leading role in the project, including planning, instrument development, and data analysis, and contributed to the elucidation of the evolutionary history of the universe. He also published many pioneering astrophysical theories. Through these achievements, he has provided us a significant understanding of the universe.

Mrs. Ariane Mnouchkine

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Mrs. Ariane Mnouchkine, the founder and director of the Théâtre du Soleil, has been continuously producing masterpieces with historical and political themes. Referring to traditional performances of both the East and the West, she has been innovating theatrical expressions through her collaborative creations based on the methodology of her unique theatrical organization which eschews hierarchical order.

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  • Contact for further information:

    Takeshi Nakajima (Mr.), Michiaki Koizumi (Mr.)
    Communications Division
    Inamori Foundation