Weizmann Institute professor becomes first Israeli to win prestigious Kavli award

Prof. Sagiv secured this year’s Nanoscience prize for his team's pioneering work on self-assembling monolayers on solid substrates within the field of nanochemistry.

 Prof. Jacob Sagiv of the Weizmann Institute of Science. (photo credit: NILS LUND)
Prof. Jacob Sagiv of the Weizmann Institute of Science.
(photo credit: NILS LUND)

Prof. Jacob Sagiv of the Weizmann Institute of Science has become the first Israeli to win the Kavli award, a renowned prize awarded to experts in the field of astrophysics, nanoscience and neuroscience, on Wednesday.

Prof. Sagiv secured this year’s Nanoscience prize, alongside fellow laureates David L. Allara (USA), Ralph G. Nuzzo (USA) and George Whitesides (USA) for their pioneering work on self-assembling monolayers on solid substrates.

“We honor the 2022 Kavli Prize Laureates for their transformative contributions to science and society. Their discoveries created entirely new fields, opened up new realms of scientific research and advanced science for the benefit of humankind,” said Lise Øvreås, President of The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters.

Sagiv's story

Sagiv pioneered the modern research area of self-assembling monolayers in 1978, when he provided the first demonstrations of the possibility of creating ordered films of molecules adsorbed on glass, metal, and polymer surfaces. The concept works for molecules with different functional groups and on different solid surfaces, thus paving the way to myriad of useful applications and making Sagiv a pioneer in his field. 

The Weizmann Institute of Science is seen in Rehovot, Israel. (credit: WEIZMANN INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE)The Weizmann Institute of Science is seen in Rehovot, Israel. (credit: WEIZMANN INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE)

He is now finally being honored for his innovations in nanochemistry.

“The Kavli Prizes are awarded in three areas: astrophysics, nanoscience and neuroscience – the largest, the smallest, and the most complex. I believe these prizes are in the most exciting fields for the twenty-first century and beyond,” said Fred Kavli, the Norwegian-American physicist, entrepreneur and philanthropist for whom the prize was dedicated and named in 2008.