The Franklin Institute Awards Class of 2024

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2024 Awards Laureates

Video: Announcing the 2024 Franklin Institute Awards Laureates
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Year
2024
Subject
Mechanical Engineering
Award
Benjamin Franklin Medal
Affiliation

Columbia University │ New York, New York

Citation

For transformative contributions to our understanding of the physical behavior of polymers, materials made of long chains of molecules, leading to innovative product development of rubber and other soft materials. 

Year
2024
Subject
Life Science
Award
Benjamin Franklin Medal
Affiliation

The Salk Institute for Biological Studies │ La Jolla, California

Citation

For applying genetics to the understanding of how plants sense and respond to light, and for inspiring new strategies for utilizing plants to combat climate change.

Year
2024
Subject
Chemistry
Award
Benjamin Franklin Medal
Affiliation

Massachusetts Institute of Technology │ Cambridge, Massachusetts

Citation

For innovative methods to create novel materials one molecular layer at a time, and for applying these materials to areas ranging from drug delivery to energy storage.

Year
2024
Subject
Earth and Environmental Science
Award
Benjamin Franklin Medal
Affiliation

University of Guelph │ Guelph, Ontario, Canada

Citation

For his bold vision to catalog every living organism using a small piece of DNA—a DNA barcode—which allows scientists to rapidly discover new species and assess biodiversity, and which provides everyone with a means to explore biodiversity for themselves.  

Year
2024
Subject
Electrical Engineering
Award
Benjamin Franklin Medal
Affiliation

The University of Texas at Austin │ Austin, Texas

Citation

For his pioneering role in the design, development, and commercialization of Ethernet, an interface for networking and file sharing between computers.

Year
2024
Subject
Chemistry
Award
Benjamin Franklin NextGen Award
Affiliation

Massachusetts Institute of Technology │ Cambridge, Massachusetts

Citation

For illuminating the fundamental chemical processes that protect plants from sun damage, thereby uncovering novel approaches to increase crop yields.

Year
2024
Subject
Leadership
Award
Bower Award for Business Leadership
Affiliation

AMD | Austin, Texas

Citation

For her transformational leadership of AMD, a leader in high-performance and adaptive computing and one of the fastest growing semiconductor companies in the world. As an accomplished engineer and champion for diversity and women in tech, Dr. Su’s bold vision to deliver the next generation of computing and AI solutions has led to AMD becoming one of the industry’s most influential companies.

Year
2024
Subject
Physics
Award
Bower Award and Prize for Achievement in Science
Affiliation

Harvard University Cambridge, Massachusetts

Citation

For transforming our fundamental understanding of squishy materials ranging from gels, polymers, colloids, and emulsions to living organisms. His innovations led to the development of microdevices for applications ranging from rapid disease screening and drug discovery to cosmetic products. A master educator, he has popularized science through the physics of cooking.

Year
2024
Subject
Computer and Cognitive Science
Award
Benjamin Franklin Medal
Affiliation

The University of British Columbia │ Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Citation

For charting how children learn the sounds of languages and how their brains change and adapt in critical ways as they do so.  Her work helps us understand typical and atypical human development.