Did China try to buy a Nobel Prize?

Swedish prosecutors are investigating whether Nobel Prize jurors who accepted an all-expenses paid trip to China can be charged with accepting bribery. Jurors from the medicine, physics, and chemistry comittees all accepted invitations from the Chinese government to come speak about what it takes to win a Nobel Prize. Chinese authorities covered their plane tickets, ...

By , a former associate editor at Foreign Policy.

Swedish prosecutors are investigating whether Nobel Prize jurors who accepted an all-expenses paid trip to China can be charged with accepting bribery. Jurors from the medicine, physics, and chemistry comittees all accepted invitations from the Chinese government to come speak about what it takes to win a Nobel Prize. Chinese authorities covered their plane tickets, hotels, and meals.

Swedish prosecutors are investigating whether Nobel Prize jurors who accepted an all-expenses paid trip to China can be charged with accepting bribery. Jurors from the medicine, physics, and chemistry comittees all accepted invitations from the Chinese government to come speak about what it takes to win a Nobel Prize. Chinese authorities covered their plane tickets, hotels, and meals.

One member of the Swedish Royal Academy of Sciences admitted that this doesn’t look very good for the prize:

"We should be very careful not to put ourselves in a situation where the Nobel committee’s work can be called into question," he said. "I think we should have thought about that here."

On the other hand, if China was trying to influence their decision, they may need to work a little harder. China hasn’t won a prize since 1957.

(Hat tip: China Digital Times)

Joshua Keating was an associate editor at Foreign Policy. Twitter: @joshuakeating

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