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No magic formula to win Nobel Prize: Ramakrishnan

Last Updated: Monday, December 20, 2010 - 18:42

New Delhi: There is no magic formula for winning a Nobel Prize, Chemistry laureate Venkataraman Ramakrishnan said here today.

Ramakrishnan, who won the 2009 Chemistry Nobel, asked students to choose their institutions wisely and be passionate about their respective areas of research to achieve better results.

"There is no magic formula for winning a Nobel Prize. And I also don`t think that if India wins a single Nobel Prize it does not mean suddenly that Indian science is okay," he said at a public address organised by Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and FICCI.

Interacting with an audience, mostly comprising students and researchers, Ramakrishnan said judging science in a country by the number of Nobel Prizes won "is not a good way".

Asked about the best advice he received as a young researcher, the Nobel laureate said "do not work on anything you are not interested in".

Ramakrishnan graduated in Physics from M S University in Baroda, completed his post doctoral studies in the subject and later pursued studies in biology.

Giving tips to young researchers, he said "Do not work on anything you are not interested in. This is an absolute minimum requirement".

"If you are a science student ... everyday science is an absolutely tedious and you have to have the patience to see a problem through. This requires on how much you care about the problem", he said.

He advocated the Crick Test for students. "It is a classic test that you can use. It was first proposed by Francis Crick. He said if you do not gossip about your problem that means you are not really interested in it," he said.

Ramakrishnan also asked young researchers to set a five year horizon for their work. "This is more applicable to young investigators ... where do you want to be in the next five years, not in terms of status but in terms of work," he said.


First Published: Monday, December 20, 2010 - 18:42
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