A Nigerian biophysicist, Dr. John O. Dabiri, is one of this year’s winners of the prestigious MacArthur Genius Awards. He is among the 23 winners selected across the world.
Online news portal, Huffington Post reports that Dabiri, aged 30 years, is an Associate Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering at the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California.
He received his undergraduate degree, BSE, summa cum laude in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey.
The MacArthur Foundation was quoted as saying that Dabiri is “investigating the hydrodynamics of jellyfish propulsion, which has profound implications for our understanding of evolutionary adaptation and such related issues in fluid dynamics as blood flow in the human heart.”
The famed MacArthur Fellows Program, awards “Genius” grants to exceptional inventors, innovators and other creative types. Dabiri gets the $500,000 grant and is unrestricted in promoting the work of the winner.
This year’s honorees were contacted out of the blue by The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and offered $500,000 each with no strings attached over the next five years to pursue work in their field of interest.
“This group of Fellows, along with the more than 800 who have come before, reflects the tremendous breadth of creativity among us,” said MacArthur President Robert Gallucci in a press release.
“They are explorers and risk takers, contributing to their fields and to society in innovative, impactful ways. They provide us all with inspiration and hope for the future.”
The foundation introduced the 23 fellows by providing a video of each winner and their important contributions in a vast array of fields.
Reacting to the award, Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka said: “I am exceedingly happy, as always, to read this news about (Dabiri) a member of the Joshua generation of my home country, Nigeria and I feel very happy that I’m not writing this time about the sickening corruption in my home country.”