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Dirac Prize

The Dirac Prize is the name of four prominent awards in the field of theoretical physics, computational chemistry, and mathematics, awarded by different organizations, named in honour of Professor Paul Dirac, one of the great theoretical physicists of the 20th Century.

The Dirac Medal and Lecture (University of New South Wales)

The first-established prize is the Dirac Medal for the Advancement of Theoretical Physics, awarded by the University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia, jointly with the Australian Institute of Physics on the occasion of the public Dirac Lecture. The Lecture and the Medal commemorate the visit to the university in 1975 of Professor Dirac, who gave five lectures there. The lectures were subsequently published as a book Directions of Physics (Wiley, 1978 – H. Hora and J. Shepanski, eds.). Professor Dirac donated the royalties from this book to the University for the establishment of the Dirac Lecture series. The prize includes a silver medal and honorarium. It was first awarded in 1979.


1979 Hannes Alfven
1981 John Clive Ward
1983 Nicolaas Bloembergen
1985 David Pines
1987 Robert Hofstadter
1988 Klaus von Klitzing
1989 Carlo Rubbia & Kenneth G. Wilson
1990 Norman F. Ramsey
1991 Herbert A. Hauptman
1992 Wolfgang Paul
1996 Edwin Salpeter
2002 Heinrich Hora
2003 Edward Shuryak
2004 Iosif Khriplovich
2006 Sir Roger Penrose
2008 Harald Fritzsch
2011 Lord May of Oxford

Dirac Medal of the ICTP

The Dirac Medal of the ICTP is given each year by the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) in honour of physicist P.A.M. Dirac. The award, given each year on August 8 (Dirac's birthday), was first awarded in 1985.

An international committee of distinguished scientists selects the winners from a list of nominated candidates. The Committee invites nominations from scientists working in the fields of theoretical physics or mathematics.

The Dirac Medal of the ICTP is not awarded to Nobel Laureates, Fields Medalists, or Wolf Prize winners. However, several Dirac Medallists have subsequently won one of these awards.

The medallists also receive a prize of US$ 5,000.


1985 Edward Witten, Yakov Zel'dovich
1986 Alexander Polyakov, Yoichiro Nambu
1987 Bruno Zumino, Bryce DeWitt
1988 David J. Gross, Efim S. Fradkin
1989 John H. Schwarz, Michael Green
1990 Ludwig Faddeev, Sidney Coleman
1991 Jeffrey Goldstone, Stanley Mandelstam
1992 Nikolai Bogoliubov, Yakov G. Sinai
1993 Daniel Z. Freedman, Peter van Nieuwenhuizen, Sergio Ferrara
1994 Frank Wilczek
1995 Michael Berry
1996 Martinus J.G. Veltman, Tullio Regge
1997 David Olive, Peter Goddard
1998 Roman Jackiw, Stephen L. Adler
1999 Giorgio Parisi
2000 Helen Quinn, Howard Georgi, Jogesh Pati
2001 John Hopfield
2002 Alan Guth, Andrei Linde, Paul Steinhardt
2003 Robert Kraichnan, Vladimir E. Zakharov
2004 Curtis Callan, James Bjorken
2005 Patrick A. Lee, Sir Samuel Frederick Edwards
2006 Peter Zoller
2007 Jean Iliopoulos, Luciano Maiani
2008 Joe Polchinski, Juan Maldacena, Cumrun Vafa
2009 Roberto Car, Michele Parrinello
2010 Nicola Cabibbo, George Sudarshan

Paul Dirac Medal and Prize

The Paul Dirac Medal and Prize is awarded annually by the Institute of Physics ( Britain's and Ireland's main professional body for physicists) for "outstanding contributions to theoretical (including mathematical and computational) physics". The award, which includes a silver gilt medal and a £1000 prize, was decided upon by the Institute of Physics in 1985, and first granted in 1987.


1987 Stephen Hawking
1988 John Stewart Bell
1989 Roger Penrose
1990 Michael Berry
1991 Rudolf Peierls
1992 Anthony Leggett
1993 David Thouless
1994 Volker Heine
1995 Daniel Walls
1996 John Pendry
1997 Peter Higgs
1998 David Deutsch
1999 Ian Percival
2000 John Cardy
2001 Brian Ridley
2002 John Hannay
2003 Christopher Hull
2004 Michael Green
2005 John Ellis
2006 Mike Gillan
2007 David Sherrington
2008 Bryan Webber
2009 Mike Cates
2010 James Binney

Dirac Medal of the WATOC

The Dirac Medal is awarded annually by The World Association of Theoretical and Computational Chemists for "for the outstanding computational chemist in the world under the age of 40. The award was first granted in 1998.


1998 Timothy J. Lee
1999 Peter M. W. Gill
2000 Jiali Gao
2001 Martin Kaupp
2002 Jerzy Cioslowski
2003 Peter Schreiner
2004 Jan Martin
2005 Ursula Roethlisberger
2006 Lucas Visscher
2007 Anna Krylov
2008 Kenneth Ruud
2009 Jeremy Harvey
2010 Daniel Crawford
2011 Leticia González

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