Nationality is not taken into consideration while accepting nominations for the Nobel Prize, a top official from the Nobel Museum has affirmed.
When asked about the possibility of someone from the GCC countries winning a Nobel Prize, Dr Lars Heikensen, chairman of the Nobel Museum, said: “We are open to applications for the award from across the world. In 2010, the Nobel Prize for Peace was awarded to Liu Xiaobo, a Chinese literary critic and human rights activist who won the prize while serving time in a Chinese prison. Governments will come and go, the Nobel will live on the foundation principle of rewarding human excellence.”
Dr Heikensen was speaking at the opening ceremony of the Nobel Museum exhibition in Dubai, which will open under the theme ‘Nobel Prize: Ideas Changing the World’. This is the first time the exhibition is being hosted in an Arab city under a new concept.
The exhibition, organised at the Burj Khalifa annexe in Downtown Dubai by the Mohammed Bin Rashid Foundation (MBRF), will run for a month from today.
The MBRF expects the event to attract a large number of intellectuals and students from the region. Jamal bin Huwaireb, managing director of MBRF, said: “This event will inspire our young people to look up to the great personalities and innovative minds showcased at the exhibition as role models, just as we have been inspired by Arab novelist Naguib Mahfouz, scientist Ahmed Zewail, Lebanese doctor Peter Medawar, and other Arab Nobel Prize winners.”
Dr Olof Ameline, director of Nobel Museum, said the Nobel Museum exhibition in Dubai will enable the public in the region to get acquainted with the concept of the Nobel Prize and the most prominent innovators who have contributed to humanity’s welfare and development. He said the museum will inspire many towards creativity and innovation by highlighting how Nobel achievers have employed innovation and knowledge to touch the lives of millions.
Dubai has always been a frontrunner in attracting the world’s most important events, and is an “exceptional host” for the Nobel Museum exhibition in the Middle East.