HELSINKI, January 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
Technology Academy Finland has today called on universities, research institutes and industrial organisations from around the world to nominate candidates for the sixth Millennium Technology Prize - one of the World's leading science and technology awards. The nomination period for the prize begins on January 14, 2013 and will remain open until July 31, 2013. The Grand Prize Winner(s) will be announced at a ceremony in Helsinki in June 2014.
With a prize pot of at least one million euros, the award is given every two years by Technology Academy Finland (TAF), an independent foundation established by Finnish industry in partnership with government and academic institutions.
The winner(s) of the prize is responsible for an innovation that has changed or has a potential to change people's lives for the better. The innovations must have been applied in practice and are proven to deliver extensive change now and in the future, stimulating further cutting edge research and development in science and technology. The prize can be awarded to a single individual or to a team and is open to innovators of all nationalities and to those working in all fields of technology apart from military technology.The Millennium Technology Prize has a track record of picking scientists that go on to major international prominence. During its life the Millennium Technology Grand Prize has been awarded to six Grand Prize winners, all of whom are now recognised internationally. The most recent winners of the prize are Linus Torvalds and Shinya Yamanaka, who were awarded in 2012. Torvalds initiated the free open source operating system Linux that runs on many smartphone and tablet devices, and Dr Yamanaka pioneered non-embryonic stem cell research to develop treatment for illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes and spinal injuries. After he won the Millennium Technology Prize, Dr Yamanaka went on to be awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine. Dr Ainomaija Haarla, President and CEO of the Technology Academy Finland, said: "Since the Millennium Technology Prize was founded eleven years ago it has celebrated the role of gifted innovators who contribute to the improvement of people's living conditions - whether through developing free and open communication technologies, creating cost efficient and sustainable sources of energy, or inventing new ways of delivering drugs that treat serious diseases."