About The Prize

The prize and its spirit

The Dan David Prize is a joint international corporation, endowed by the Dan David Foundation and headquartered at Tel Aviv University.

The Dan David Prize recognizes and encourages innovative and interdisciplinary research that cuts across traditional boundaries and paradigms. It aims to foster universal values of excellence, creativity, justice, democracy and progress and to promote the scientific, technological and humanistic achievements that advance and improve our world. 

The Dan David Prize covers three time dimensions - Past, Present and Future - that represent realms of human achievement. Each year the International Board chooses one field within each time dimension. Following a review process of individuals nominated for the Prize, by independent Review Committees comprised of renowned scholars and professionals, the International Board then chooses the laureates for each field. 

The Past refers to fields that expand knowledge of former times.
The Present recognizes achievements that shape and enrich society today.
The Future focuses on breakthroughs that hold great promise for improvement of our world.

Three prizes of one million US dollars each are granted annually in the fields chosen for the three time dimensions. The prizes are granted to individuals or institutions with proven, exceptional, distinct excellence in the sciences, arts, humanities, public service and business, that have made and continue to make an outstanding contribution to humanity on the basis of merit, without discrimination of gender, race, religion, nationality, or political affiliation.

The Dan David Prize laureates donate 10% of their prize money to postgraduate students in their respective fields, thereby contributing to the community and fostering a new generation of scholars. It is also unique in its outreach efforts in the wider community. Since its inception, the Dan David Prize has embarked upon two exciting initiatives:

  • The Dan David Prize, in conjunction with the Unit for Science Oriented Youth at Tel Aviv University has initiated the 'Name Your Hero' Essay Competition for High School Youth throughout Israel. High school students are encouraged to submit an essay describing the individuals they deem worthy of the Dan David Prize. The fields selected for a given year are influenced by the high school students' input and ideas.
  • A Scholars Forum has been established comprising of Dan David Prize scholarship recipients from around the world doing research in the various selected fields since the inception of the Dan David Prize. This forum serves as a platform for Dan David Prize scholars to discuss research topics, present individual research and exchange ideas and suggestions.

For a better understanding of the driving force behind the creation of the Prize, please read Mr. Dan David's speech at the Inaugurational Ceremony of the Prize, on May 12, 2001.