The Ig Nobel Prize

The world is a strange, fascinating and sometimes hilarious place. Nothing brings that idea to light better than the Ig Nobel Prizes awarded by the Improbable Research organization. Motto: Research that makes people LAUGH then THINK.

This year’s honors, presented September 12 in the 23rd First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony, were conferred by actual Nobel Prize winners. Honorees included a study on dung beetles using the Milky Way for navigation, whether listening to opera music prolongs the life of mice with heart transplants and, my personal favorite, in psychology, “‘Beauty Is in the Eye of the Beer Holder’: People Who Think They Are Drunk Also Think They Are Attractive,” which confirms “by experiment, that people who think they are drunk also think they are attractive.”


·         For further evidence that science applies to everyday life take a look at these past winners:

  • Daisuke Inoue: (2004) Peace Prize winner for the invention of karaoke “thereby providing an entirely new way for people to learn to tolerate each other.”
  • Donald J. Smith and his father, the late Frank J. Smith (2004) Engineering winner for their patent of the comb-over (U.S. Patent #4,022,227).
  • Jillian Clarke of the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences, and then Howard University (2004) Public Health winner for “investigating the scientific validity of the 5 second rule about whether it’s safe to eat food that’s been dropped on the floor.”


And another cool thing? These articles can be found in library databases!

Above image from “The Stinker”, the official mascot of the Ig Nobel Prizes. – See more at:

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