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Science Receives Spain's Prince of Asturias Award for Excellence in Communication
Andrew Sugden (left) and Colin Norman
The journal Science received Spain's Prince of Asturias Foundation 2007 Communications and Humanities Award at a ceremony in Oviedo, Spain on 26 October. The prestigious prize recognizes Science's excellence in science communications and its pivotal role in delivering groundbreaking research to the public.
Science International Managing Editor Andrew Sugden and News Editor Colin Norman accepted the prize from His Royal Highness Prince Felipe de Borbón, heir to the throne of Spain, at the Teatro Campoamor de Oviedo. Science shares this year's award with the journal Nature.
"I feel privileged to be part of this celebration," said Norman. He called the event "a wonderful celebration of the arts, science and culture, and great tribute to the work of everyone involved with Science."
"Authoritative, objective scientific communications across borders is essential as science and technology are becoming increasingly integral to global prosperity, yet also increasingly politicized in certain regions," said Science Editor-in-Chief Donald Kennedy in a statement. "We are delighted and deeply honored that our journal's contributions to public discourse on science and technology have been recognized by Spain's Prince of Asturias Foundation."
The Foundation, formed in 1980, honors scientific, technical, cultural, social and humanitarian work carried out internationally by individuals, groups or organizations, across eight categories.
This year's winners include musician Bob Dylan and former U.S. Vice President and recent Nobel Peace Prize recipient Al Gore, Jr., among others.
Science is published by AAAS. In the official award statement, the Foundation commended Science for publishing more than a century's worth of innovative and important research, "thus contributing to the birth and development of many disciplines, including electromagnetism, relativity, quantum theory, genetics, biochemistry and astronomy."
At a news conference held 24 October in Oviedo, Norman and Sugden spoke of the inseparable connections between scientific research and public policy, and the importance of science communication in this essential relationship. Science's Executive Editor Monica Bradford, in a video greeting on behalf of the journal, said "any story of science left untold is like the sound of a single hand clapping—an event with too little impact in the broader world." (Watch a video of the statement in Spanish, read by Natasha Pinol, spokeswoman for the journal Science.)
Science held a second news conference in Oviedo on 25 October to announce research from Spanish and U.K. scientists on an unusual "cold spot" in the cosmic microwave background, often called the afterglow of the Big Bang. The study, published online by the journal Science at the Science Express Web site, could help researchers better understand the early expansion of the universe. A related news release is available in English and Spanish.
26 October 2007