Research that makes us laugh and think

Published 2012-03-19 00:00. Updated 2013-11-26 10:33

[PRESS INVITATION 15 March 2012] Want to know more about how herring communicate by farting and why chickens prefer beautiful people? Then come to Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm on Saturday 24 March to hear some of the IgNobel laureates talk about their research. Also attending will be the father of the prize, Marc Abrahams, editor-in-chief of the Annals of Improbable Research (AIR).

The lectures are co-arranged by the Swedish sceptic organisation Vetenskap & Folkbildning and Karolinska Institutet, and are part of the AIR lecture tour of Scandinavia. Journalists are welcome to attend and to interview the speakers (by arrangement).

The IgNobel Prize is a play on the word ignoble (dishonourable and unworthy) and was first awarded in 1991 in recognition of research of the more unusual, creative kind. It is awarded annually in ten different fields, including the conventional categories of the Nobel Prize proper. Far from denigrating its recipients' work, the prize is usually received with humour and appreciation. According to the organisers, the aim of the prize is to first make people laugh, and then make them think.

Date and venue:

4.00 pm, Saturday 24 March 2012 in the Jacob Berzelius auditorium, Karolinska Institutet, Berzelius väg 3, Solna.


- Marc Abrahams is founder and editor-in-chief of the humorous and satirical scientific journal, The Annals of Improbable Research. He is also the father of the IgNobel Prize and an author, journalist and speaker.

- Magnus Wahlberg and Håkan Westerberg, who received the 2004 IgNobel Prize in Biology for their research on how herring communicate by farting. Magnus Wahlberg is currently researching at the University of Southern Denmark and the Fjord and Baelt Centre. Håkan Westerberg works at the fresh water laboratory at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU).

- Magnus Enquist is professor of ethology at Stockholm University. He received the 2003 IgNobel Prize in Interdisciplinary Research for a study of how chickens prefer beautiful people.

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