Kenichi Fukui’s speech at the Nobel Banquet, December 10, 1981
Your Majesties, Your Royal Highnesses, Ladies and Gentlemen,
I have the privilege to speak on behalf of Professor Roald Hoffmann and myself and to express first of all our deepest gratitude for the high honour and warm hospitality that have been given us on this occasion.
Chemistry itself knows altogether too well that – given the real fear that the scarcity of global resources and energy might threaten the unity of mankind – chemistry is in a position to make a contribution towards securing a true peace on earth.
We pray that every field of science may contribute in bringing happiness – not disaster – to human beings. In that spirit we wish to accept this highest honour – in the cause of peace – not for ourselves alone, but for all researchers in basic chemistry. In particular, for younger researchers on whom the future of mankind may depend. We believe that they are working with all the scientific wisdom at their disposal for the preservation of the inheritance of the earth and for the lasting survival of mankind.
Kagaku no kenkyu no oyo ni oite nani ga zen de soshite – moshimo arutosureba – nani ga aku de aruka o mottomo yoku miwakerunowa kagaku no sentanteki na ryoiki ni hataraku mottomo sugureta kagakushatachi desu. (What I said in Japanese means: We think that it is the best scientists working in the frontier fields of science who are best able to judge what is good and what is bad – if any – in the application of their scientific research).
Thank you very much.
Their work and discoveries range from cancer therapy and laser physics to developing proteins that can solve humankind’s chemical problems. The work of the 2018 Nobel Laureates also included combating war crimes, as well as integrating innovation and climate with economic growth. Find out more.