Once again, we’re pleased to announce the winners of the 32nd First Annual (not a typo!) Ig Nobel Prizes.
This year’s awards ceremony was held virtually on September 15th and live streamed globally. The 10 new Ig Nobel Prize award winners include:
- For applied cardiology, a team of researchers from the Czech Republic for research that confirmed that, when new romantic partners meet for the first time and are attracted to each other, their heart rates synchronize;
- For literature, researchers in Canada, the U.S., the UK, and Australia for confirming that poor writing and not specialized concepts are what makes legal documents unnecessarily difficult to understand;
- For biology, a pair of researchers from Brazil and Columbia on whether and how constipation affects the mating prospects of scorpions;
- For medicine, a team of researchers from Poland for demonstrating that when patients undergo some forms of toxic chemotherapy, they suffer fewer harmful side effects when ice cream replaces one component of the procedure;
- For engineering, Japanese researchers who worked to discover the most efficient way for people to use their fingers when turning a knob; and finally…
- For peace, an international consortium of researchers who developed an algorithm to help gossipers decide when to tell the truth and when to lie.
For those who have never heard of the Ig Nobel Prizes (and, if so, where have you been?), they are not to be confused with the annual Nobel Prizes typically announced in early October in Oslo, Norway. Instead, the Ig Nobel Prizes “honor achievements that first make people laugh and then make them think.”