"to promote the sciences and strengthen their influence in society"

Crafoord Prize

Anna-Greta and Holger Crafoord´s Fund was established in 1980 and the first prize was awarded in 1982. The prize is intended to promote international basic research in the disciplines Mathematics and Astronomy, Geosciences, Biosciences (with particular emphasis on ecology) and Polyarthritis (e.g. rheumatoid arthritis).

The Crafoord Prize is awarded in partnership between the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and the Crafoord Foundation in Lund. The Academy is responsible for selecting the Crafoord Laureates.

The Crafoord Prize in Polyarthritis 2017

Illustration: Johan Jarnestad.The Royal Science Academy of Sciences has decided to award the 2017 Crafoord Prize in Polyarthritis to Shimon Sakaguchi, Osaka University, Osaka, Japan, Fred Ramsdell, Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy, San Francisco, CA, USA, and Alexander Rudensky, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY, USA “for their discoveries relating to regulatory T cells, which counteract harmful immune reactions in arthritis and other autoimmune diseases.”

Press release
Popular Science Background (pdf)

Prize disciplines

The prize disciplines have been chosen so as to complement those for which the Nobel Prizes are awarded. The prize is awarded in one discipline each year in accordance with a set scheme:

  • Year 1 - Mathematics and Astronomy
  • Year 2 - Geosciences
  • Year 3 -Biosciences
  • (repeat)

The prize in polyarthritis is awarded only when a special committee has shown that scientific progress in this field has been such that an award is justified.

Nominating and awarding

The Academy invites scientists from all over the world to nominate candidates for the prize. Nominations are submitted to the Academy during the spring prior to the year in which the decision is to be made. The nominations received are then rewieved and assessed by a Prize Committee consisting of members from the appropriate Academy classes.

The Crafoord Prize Laureate in mathematics 2008 Edward Witten. Photo:Andrea Westerdahl/KVAThe prize should be awarded to one recipient, but may, if necessary, be divided among up to three recipients. At the same time, grant allocations are announced, and may be applied for both by individuals and by institutions. Grant applications can be made for scientific equipment and research, publication of scientific works, scientific conferences and symposia, studies outside of Sweden for Swedish researchers, and activities to further research within the field of research covered by the prize.

On the basis of reports from the Prize Committee and the appropriate Academy Class, decisions concerning prizewinner(s) and grant recipients are made by the Academy in the spring of the year in which the prize is to be awarded.