This year’s Rudbeck and Linnaeus Medals awarded
8 December 2017
The Rudbeck Medal is being awarded this year to professors Olga Botner, Fred Nyberg and Johan Svedjedal, and the Linnaeus Medal is being awarded to professor Siv Andersson. The medals will be presented at the Winter Conferment Ceremony on 26 January 2018.
Gold Linnaeus Medal
The gold Linnaeus Medal will be awarded to Siv Andersson, Professor of Molecular Evolution at the Department of Cell and Molecular Biology at Uppsala University.
Siv Andersson is awarded the medal in recognition of her studies on bacterial genomes. Most bacteria cannot be cultured in laboratories and it has previously been nearly impossible to study these bacteria. Siv Andersson’s research team was one of the first in the world to map entire bacterial genomes. Her research has primarily focused on studies of genomes in bacteria that have adapted to different types of insect, animal and human hosts. She has studied the evolutionary processes behind the genome’s change, and how new genes are formed and broken down when organisms adapt to new living environments. The results of her studies have contributed to increased knowledge about the evolution of bacteria and demonstrated a vast biodiversity that was completely unknown in Linnaeus’ time.
The Rudbeck Medal
The Rudbeck Medal is awarded to Olga Botner, Professor of Experimental Elementary Particle Physics at the Department of Physics and Astronomy; Fred Nyberg, Professor Emeritus of Biological Research on Drug Dependence and Senior Professor at the Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences; and Johan Svedjedal, Professor of Literature, primarily Sociology of Literature, at the Department of Literature.
Olga Botner has led research at the IceCube South Pole Neutrino Observatory, which in 2013 was named “Breakthrough of the Year” by Physics World for the discovery of high-energy cosmic neutrinos. Uppsala’s research team in the new research domain astroparticle physics was started by Olga Botner and Allan Hallgren in the 1990s and developed new methods to enable the detection of neutrinos from outer space. These weakly interacting particles are difficult to detect and require extremely large detector volumes, which led to the international project in which a cubic kilometre of ice at the South Pole was equipped with scattered detection elements. This “IceCube” has opened a new window into the universe.
Fred Nyberg has focused a great deal of his research on generating new knowledge and understanding of the mechanisms underlying the diversity of effects that addictive and abused substances cause to the brain. The overall goal was to contribute to the development of appropriate and improved treatment strategies to benefit society’s large group of addicts. A key aspect of Nyberg’s research is the connection between biochemical factors and he has studied drug effects on behaviour in detail.
Johan Svedjedal is awarded the medal in recognition of his research, which has resulted in a great number of publications that in various ways concern the book market and the book’s path to the reader, the authors’ conditions and literature’s role in society. Johan Svedjedal has also published celebrated author biographies on Birger Sjöberg, Carl Jonas Love Almqvist and Karin Boye.