Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony 2017

The 27th First Annual Ig® Nobel Prize Ceremony & Lectures

The 27th First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony
Thursday, September 14, 2017, at 6:00 pm*
Sanders Theater, Harvard University
(twitter: #IgNobel)

*Pre-ceremony concert —and the webcast —begin at 5:40 pm (US Eastern Time)
  The ceremony proper begins at 6:00 pm

All speeches will be kept delightfully brief, enforcved by eight-year-old Miss Sweetie Poo.

The 27th First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony will introduce ten new Ig Nobel Prize winners - Each has done something that makes people laugh then think.

Winners travel to the ceremony, at their own expense, from around the world to receive their prize from a group of genuine, genuinely bemused Nobel Laureates, in Harvard's historic and largest theater. Additional info will appear in the Improbable Research blog.

TICKETS for this year's Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony are available exclusively from the Harvard Box Office.

Stay informed about upcoming Ig Nobel events by joining our private E-mail list.
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Live Webcast & Tweeting

(We've been webcasting since 1995!)

WEBCAST: We will broadcast the 2017 ceremony LIVE online, and then archive it on our YouTube Channel.

The Live Broadcast will happen September 14th here on this page (in the space immediately below where we are currently showing the 2016 ceremony), and on several sites embedding our live broadcast

Please enjoy this archived webcast of the 2016 ceremony.

LIVE TWEETING: A keen official observer will live-tweet the ceremony, as will many of the audience members in Sanders Theatre:

@ImprobResearch, and #IgNobel

Official Delegations
Groups of five (5) or more persons attending the Ig Nobel prize ceremony can be officially recognized during the ceremony as Official Delegations. If you would like your group recognized in this way: First obtain tickets, then register with Louise Sacco, Official Overseer of the Delegations (phone: 781-690-6621, email: LouiseSacco AT gmail.com). The deadline for registering as a delegation is a week before the ceremony (Thursday Sept. 7th, 2017).

Downloadable Poster & Program

Download your very own PDF copies of the 2017 Ceremony's Spiffy Poster (today), and IgBill (in August), identical to the ones we print for the ceremony.

2017 Ig Nobel ceremony poster   2017 Ig Nobel ceremony IgBill

Several organzations that value making people laugh and then think, support the Igs
We announce our biggest supporters on stage during the internationally broadcast prize ceremony.
All supporters are thanked here on the website and/or in the IgBill (program).  Past supporters include corporations, laboratories, and local business.
Contact us to discuss becoming a supporter of the Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony.

FIGS (Friends of the Ig) — Generous supporters of the 2017 Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony, who are helping the world laugh then think:
CS50 Pepper Hamilton


Ceremony Details

This 27th First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony will include many improbable things:

    Nobel Laureates attending the 2016 Ig Nobel

    Prize Ceremony

  • THE THEME of this year's ceremony (though not necessarily of the achievements that win prizes)is: UNCERTAINTY.
    • Jean Evans. Topic: Heisenberg Uncertainty.
    • Reg Blake. Topic: Uncertain Tea.
  • PRE-CEREMONY CONCERT on stage, by The Boston Typewriter Orchestra
  • PRE-PRE-CEREMONY CONCERT in the transept (lobby) by The Boston Squeezebox Ensemble (BSE) (Directed by Thomas Michel)
  • Two MOMENTS OF SCIENCE, by Daniel Rosenberg and the Performing Scientists
  • THE 24/7 LECTURES, in which several of the world's top thinkers each explains her or his subject twice:
     FIRST: a complete technical description in TWENTY-FOUR (24) SECONDS**
     AND THEN: a clear summary that anyone can understand, in SEVEN (7) WORDS
  • Ceremonial music by Nicholas Carstoiu and The Ig Leaves
  • Karen Hopkin, creator of the Studmuffins of Science Calendar
  • Salutes to the Audience Delegations
  • The Minordomos, who visibly make things run smoothly on stage
  • The Human Curtain Rods, who will hold aloft the sacred curtain through which the winners enter
  • The PAPER AIRPLANE DELUGES (2 of them)
  • The Human Curtain Rods, who will illuminate the proceedings
  • Eight-year-old "Miss Sweetie-Poo", who will encourage speakers to keep their speeches brief
  • Jean Berko Gleason: The Traditional "Welcome, Welcome" Speech
  • Jean Berko Gleason: The Traditional "Goodbye, Goodbye" Speech
  • AND other wondrous things

The ceremony also celebrates the publication of two books: This Is Improbable Too, and The Ig Nobel Cookbook (volume 1)

This Is Improbable Too Ig Nobel Cookbook vol.1

** Time limits will be enforced by the the referee, Mr. John Barrett

Who's Who: [coming soon] Click on the photo array to see many of the ceremony organizers and participants

If You Are Coming to Sanders Theatre...

WHERE: If you are walking, driving, T-ing, biking, or running to Sanders Theatre, you may want some directions. Here are: (1) map and directions; and (2) the secret of how to pahk your cah near Hahvud Yahd.

WHAT TO WEAR: We suggest you wear clothing. Clothing that, like you, is colorful. People like yourself (or in some cases, very unlike yourself) in distant places, watching the broadcast and seeing occasional glimpses of the Sanders Theatre audience, will thrill to the panoply of colors, styles, and improbable accoutrements. This is the night to unearth your old wedding gown, uniform, suit of armor, labcoat or longjohns.

WHAT TO BRING: Paper, paper, paper. Paper to make into paper airplanes. Additional paper to give to those around you who may have forgotten to bring their own paper, and who as a consequence of their own neglect are forlornly wishing they could join in the thrill and intellectual romance of making and throwing paper airplanes. SAFETY FIRST, please! Paper airplanes should only be thrown at the safety-equipment-laden individual onstage who is the Designated Paper Airplane Target. Paper airplanes may only be made of paper.

NOTE: There will be two (2) designated Paper Airplane Deluge periods, one at the very start of the ceremony, the other at the ceremony's midpoint.


The Ig Informal Lectures
Saturday, Sep 16, 2017, 1:00 pm
MIT (building and room number TBA).

A half-afternoon of improbably funny, informative, informal, brief public lectures and demonstrations:

  • The new Ig Nobel Prize winners will attempt to explain what they did, and why they did it.
  • The Ig Nobel Prize winners will be available for you to talk with, both before and after the lectures

The Ig informal Lectures are a free event, organized in cooperation with the MIT Press Bookstore.

Here's a sample from the 2016 Ig Informal Lectures: the Ig Nobel Peace Prize winners:

Special Thanks To...

All Ig Nobel Prize activities are organized by the Annals of Improbable Research (AIR). The ceremony is co-sponsored by the Harvard-Radcliffe Science Fiction Association (HRSFA), and the Harvard-Radcliffe Society of Physics Students (SPS).