Nobel Prize winners helped by independence, coffee

Nobel Prize winners help

December 7, 2009 16:15

The winners of the 2009 Nobel Prizes in economics, chemistry and physics say that intellectual freedom, independence and coffee breaks helped them make the groundbreaking scientific discoveries that will be awarded in Stockholm this week. Physics prize winner George E. Smith says scientists at the Bell Laboratories "largely ignored" topdown decisions and achieved good results through collaboration. He shares this year's physics prize with Charles K. Kao and Willard S. Boyle, who says freedom to chose his own research field was key to his success. This year's chemistry prize winner Thomas A. Steitz says he was helped at Cambridge University by coffee breaks. The Nobel laureates spoke in the Swedish capital on Monday before Thursday's awards ceremony.

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