Press release

24 April 2018

Winners of Heineken Prizes announced

The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences has awarded the Heineken Prizes this year to biomedical scientist Peter Carmeliet (University of Leuven), biologist Paul Hebert (University of Guelph), cognitive scientist Nancy Kanwisher (MIT), historian John R. McNeill (Georgetown University) and biophysicist Xiaowei Zhuang (Harvard University). The Heineken Prizes, each worth USD 200,000, will be presented on Thursday 27 September 2018 in Amsterdam.

Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for Medicine: Peter Carmeliet

Peter Carmeliet, Professor of Medicine at the University of Leuven (Belgium), is receiving the 2018 Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for Medicine for his research into the effects of growth factors on endothelial and nerve cells and for his efforts to develop treatments for vascular and neurological disorders based on his research findings.

Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for Environmental Sciences: Paul Hebert

Paul D.N. Hebert, Research Chair in Molecular Biodiversity at the University of Guelph (Canada), is receiving the 2018 Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for Environmental Sciences for his pivotal contribution to developing a genetic barcode capable of classifying every biological species on Earth.

C.L. de Carvalho-Heineken Prize for Cognitive Science: Nancy Kanwisher

Nancy Kanwisher, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge (USA), is receiving the 2018 C.L. de Carvalho-Heineken Prize for Cognitive Science for her highly original, meticulous and cogent research on the functional organisation of the human brain.

Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for History: John R. McNeill

John R. McNeill, Professor of History at Georgetown University in Washington D.C. (USA), is receiving the 2018 Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for History for his important work in integrating two recent branches of the study of history: global history and environmental history.

Dr H.P. Heineken Prize for Biochemistry and Biophysics: Xiaowei Zhuang

Xiaowei Zhuang, Professor of Physics, Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Harvard University in Cambridge (USA), is receiving the 2018 Dr H.P. Heineken Prize for Biochemistry and Biophysics for her groundbreaking work on developing high-resolution imaging methods and their use in investigating a variety of fundamental biological problems.

Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for Art: Erik van Lieshout

On 30 March, the Academy announced that the 2018 Dr A.H. Heineken Prize for Art will be awarded to Dutch visual artist Erik van Lieshout.

Awards ceremony

The 2018 Heineken Prizes will be presented on Thursday 27 September 2018 during an extraordinary meeting of the Academy at the Muziekgebouw aan het IJ in Amsterdam. During the meeting, the Academy will also present the Heineken Young Scientists Awards to four talented young researchers selected by the jury as an example for other young researchers in their fields.

About the Heineken Prizes

The Heineken Prizes are the most prestigious international science prizes of the Netherlands. They are awarded every other year. The laureates are selected by juries assembled by the Academy and made up of leading Dutch and foreign scientists and scholars.

Each of the Heineken science prizes is USD 200,000. The Heineken Prize for Art is EUR 100,000; the recipient must use half this amount to produce a publication or mount an exhibition. There are also four Heineken Young Scientists Awards, each worth EUR 10,000. The winners of these awards will be announced shortly.

The Heineken Prizes are named after Dr Henry P. Heineken (1886-1971); Dr Alfred H. Heineken (1923-2002) and Charlene de Carvalho-Heineken (1954), chairman of the Dr H.P. Heineken Foundation and the Alfred Heineken Fondsen Foundation, which fund the prizes. 

Contact details

Questions may be addressed to Irene van Houten (Academy), +31 (0)20 551 0733, (0)6 1137 5909,


High-resolution images of the laureates are available at
© Portrait photographs: Jussi Puikkonen/KNAW




Stuur door

Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences
Communications Department
Kloveniersburgwal 29
Postbus 19121
1000 GC Amsterdam 

Telefoon 020 551 0733

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