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Science Nobel Prizes by Nation


areppim column chart and statistics of the total Nobel prizes for chemistry, physics and physiology or medicine by nation, 1901 to 2018.

 

European nations taken together received 298 or 47% of the Nobel prize awards for chemistry, physics and physiology or medicine. The United States and Canada grabbed 281 or 45%, Asia and the rest of the world won 44 or 7% and 5 or 1% of the awards respectively. The surprise however is to find small nations such as Switzerland and Sweden among the top 10 heavyweights.

The list triggers a puzzling question. Are these nations prosperous because they enjoy a high scientific standing, or do they achieve scientific prowess because they have enough wealth to afford lavish spending in scientific education and research? Maybe one should not forget the third possibility, because there is always a third one. There may be a positive feedback loop between scientific advancement and economic prosperity. Science brings about prosperity, which in turn alllows for more investment in knowledge, which in turn, etc.

Nobel Prize Awards by Nation

1901 - 2018

Nobels for Chemistry, Physics and Physiology or Medicine
NationNumber of awards ¹Percent
Argentina30.5%
Australia81.3%
Austria101.6%
Belgium61.0%
Canada132.1%
China50.8%
Czech Republic10.2%
Denmark91.4%
Egypt10.2%
Finland10.2%
France345.4%
Germany7111.3%
Hungary20.3%
India10.2%
Ireland20.3%
Israel61.0%
Italy71.1%
Japan203.2%
Netherlands142.2%
New Zealand30.5%
Norway30.5%
Pakistan10.2%
Portugal10.2%
Russia152.4%
South Africa10.2%
Spain10.2%
Sweden172.7%
Switzerland182.9%
Turkey10.2%
United Kingdom8513.5%
United States26842.7%
Total628100.0%
¹ Double nationals counted twice, once for each nationality.
  National of former Czechoslovakia appears under Czech Republic.
  Nationals of former Soviet Union appear under Russia.

 

Sources: Nobel prize