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Templeton Prize facts for kids

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Templeton Prize
Bernard D'Espagnat receives prize from HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, Buckingham Palace (4440879448).jpg
Bernard d'Espagnat receiving the Templeton Prize from the Duke of Edinburgh in 2009
Presented by Templeton Foundation
Country United States
Reward £1.1 million (2019)
First awarded 1973
Currently held by Edna Adan Ismail

The Templeton Prize is an annual award granted to a living person, in the estimation of the judges, "whose exemplary achievements advance Sir John Templeton's philanthropic vision: harnessing the power of the sciences to explore the deepest questions of the universe and humankind's place and purpose within it." It was established, funded and administered by John Templeton starting in 1972. It is now co-funded by the John Templeton Foundation, Templeton Religion Trust, and Templeton World Charity Foundation, and administered by the John Templeton Foundation.

The prize was originally awarded to people working in the field of religion (Mother Teresa was the first winner), but in the 1980s the scope broadened to include people working at the intersection of science and religion. Until 2001, the name of the prize was "Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion", and from 2002 to 2008 it was called the "Templeton Prize for Progress Toward Research or Discoveries about Spiritual Realities". Hindus, Christians, Jews, Buddhists and Muslims have been on the panel of judges and have been recipients of the prize.

The monetary value of the prize is adjusted so that it exceeds that of the Nobel Prizes; Templeton felt, according to The Economist, that "spirituality was ignored" in the Nobel Prizes. As of 2019, it is £1.1 million. It has typically been presented by Prince Philip in a ceremony at Buckingham Palace.

The prize has been referred to as prestigious and coveted, with The Washington Post calling it the most prestigious award in religion. Atheist scientists Richard Dawkins, Harry Kroto and Jerry Coyne have criticized the prize as "blurring [religion's] well-demarcated border with science" and being awarded "to scientists who are either religious themselves or say nice things about religion", a criticism rejected by 2011 laureate Martin Rees, who pointed to his own and other laureates' atheism and that their research in fields such as psychology, evolutionary biology, and economy can hardly be classified as the "promotion of religion".


Year Laureate Notes Ref(s)
1973 Mother Teresa facing right Mother Teresa Founder of the Missionaries of Charity; 1979 Nobel Peace Prize laureate
1974 Frère Roger in a group of people Frère Roger Founder of the Taizé Community
1975 Radhakrishnan.jpg Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan Former President of India, advocate of non-aggression with Pakistan
1976 Cardinal L. Suenens.jpg Leo Joseph Suenens Pioneer in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal movement
1977 Chiara Lubich, smiling, surrounded by other smiling people Chiara Lubich Founder of the Focolare Movement
Thomas F. Torrance Former Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland
1979 Statue of Niwano.JPG Nikkyō Niwano Co-founder of the Risshō Kōsei Kai
Ralph Wendell Burhoe Founder of the journal Zygon
1981 History of Modern Biomedicine Research Group.jpg Cicely Saunders Founder of the hospice and palliative care movement
1982 A black-and-white image of Billy Graham Billy Graham Evangelist
1983 Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn with his mouth open and lower teeth on show Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn Soviet dissident novelist; Nobel laureate
Michael Bourdeaux Founder of the Keston Institute
Sir Alister Hardy Founder of the Religious Experience Research Centre
James I. McCord Former president, Princeton Theological Seminary
1987 Father Jaki June 2007.jpg Stanley Jaki Benedictine priest; professor of astrophysics, Seton Hall University
Inamullah Khan Former secretary-general, Modern World Muslim Congress
1989 Carl Friedrich von Weizsaecker.jpg Carl Friedrich Freiherr von Weizsäcker Physicist and philosopher
George MacLeod Founder of the Iona Community
1990 Stamp of India - 2014 - Colnect 608272 - Baba Amte.jpeg Baba Amte Developer of modern communities for people suffering from leprosy
Charles Birch Emeritus professor, University of Sydney
1991 Immanuel Jakobovits.jpg Immanuel Jakobovits, Baron Jakobovits Former Chief Rabbi of Great Britain and the Commonwealth
1992 Rev.Kyung-Chik Han and Seung Moo Ha(Theologian) (cropped).jpg Kyung-Chik Han Evangelist and founder of Youngnak Presbyterian Church, Seoul. From northern Korea.
1993 Chuck Colson.jpg Charles Colson Founder of the Prison Fellowship
1994 Michael Novak behind a lectern, speaking at the Foreign Press Center in Washington Michael Novak Philosopher and diplomat
1995 Paul Davies.jpg Paul Davies Theoretical physicist
1996 Bill Bright.jpg Bill Bright Founder of the Campus Crusade for Christ
Pandurang Shastri Athavale Social reformer and philosopher, founder of the Swadhyay Movement
Sir Sigmund Sternberg Philanthropist; founder of the Three Faith Forum
Ian Barbour Former professor of science, technology and society, Carleton College
2000 Freeman Dyson.jpg Freeman Dyson Theoretical and mathematical physicist, mathematician, and statistician
Arthur Peacocke Former dean, Clare College, Cambridge
2002 Johnpolkinghorne.jpg John Polkinghorne Physicist and theologian
2003 Holmes Rolston III.jpg Holmes Rolston III Philosopher
2004 GeorgeEllis-Walking.jpg George F. R. Ellis Cosmologist and philosopher
2005 Charles Townes Nobel.jpg Charles Hard Townes Nobel laureate and physicist
2006 John Barrow - fixed colors.jpg John D. Barrow Cosmologist and theoretical physicist
2007 Charles Taylor giving a lecture at the New School in 2007 Charles Taylor Philosopher
2008 MKHeller.jpg Michał Heller Physicist and philosopher
2009 Bernard D'Espagnat receives prize from HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, Buckingham Palace (4440879448).jpg Bernard d'Espagnat Physicist
2010 Dr. Ayala.jpg Francisco J. Ayala Biologist
2011 Martin Rees at Jodrell Bank in 2007.jpg Martin Rees, Baron Rees of Ludlow Cosmologist and astrophysicist
2012 Dalai Lama 1430 Luca Galuzzi 2007crop.jpg 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso Spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism, and 1989 Nobel Peace Prize laureate
2013 TutuCOP17.JPG Desmond Tutu Nobel laureate, social rights activist and retired Anglican archbishop
2014 Tomas Halik.jpg Tomáš Halík Roman Catholic priest, theologian, philosopher
2015 702524260 txjiQ-O.jpg Jean Vanier Catholic theologian, humanitarian and founder of L'Arche and Faith and Light
2016 Sirjonathansacks.jpg Jonathan Sacks Former Chief Rabbi of Great Britain, philosopher, and scholar of Judaism
2017 AlvinPlantinga.JPG Alvin Plantinga American scholar, philosopher, and writer
2018 King Abdullah portrait.jpg Abdullah II of Jordan King of Jordan
2019 LowResMarcelo-Gleiser.jpg Marcelo Gleiser Brazilian physicist and astronomer, Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Dartmouth College
2020 Francis Collins official photo.jpg Francis Collins Geneticist and physician
2021 Jane-goodall.jpg Jane Goodall Ethologist, activist and renowned chimpanzee researcher
2022 FrankStockholm2004.jpg Frank Wilczek Theoretical physicist
2023 Edna Adan.jpg Edna Adan Ismail Health-care advocate

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Premio Templeton para niños

  • List of religion-related awards
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