Leo P. Kadanoff Prize

This prize recognizes a scientist or scientists whose work (theoretical, experimental or computational) has opened new vistas for statistical and / or nonlinear physics. The annual prize consists of $10,000, a medal, certificate, travel reimbursement up to $500 for recipients traveling within North America, up to $1,000 from overseas, and a registration waiver to attend the APS March Meeting to give an invited talk and accept the award.

Establishment & Support

The Kadanoff Prize was conceived and proposed by the APS Group on Statistical and Nonlinear Physics (GSNP) to honor the memory and celebrate the remarkable legacy of Leo Kadanoff. Kadanoff, who served as APS president from 2007-2008, had an enormous impact on statistical and nonlinear physics. He himself was the recipient of many of the field’s most prestigious awards. His influence was broad and his originality deep – broader and deeper than a list of his research papers would suggest. His accessible approach to the renormalization group has been emulated in an array of fields and his lectures and popular writings have inspired a generation of scientists.

The Kadanoff Prize was established in 2018 with contributions from the family, friends, and collaborators of Leo Kadanoff, and individual donations from a broad spectrum of the American Physical Society. The Prize was fully endowed soon after by a generous gift from an anonymous donor.

Rules & Eligibility

See the APS Prize and Award Nomination Guidelines.

Nomination & Selection Process

Deadline: Monday, June 1, 2020

A nomination consists of:

  • The nominee’s name, institution, contact information
  • A suggested citation (usually citations do not include the person’s name, and start with “For...”. See the APS prize and award recipients page for examples. Limit the citation to 300 characters or less, including spaces)
  • A nomination letter evaluating the nominee's qualifications in the light of the particular features of the prize or award and identifying the specific work or achievement to be recognized
  • At least two, but no more than four, letters of support
  • Complete a provided demographics form (if known/wish to specify age, gender, race, and ethnicity of the nominee).
  • The nominee’s CV or biosketch (optional)
  • A list of the nominee’s most important publications (optional)
  • Up to five reprints or preprints (optional)

All files must be written in English and uploaded in PDF format. Letters must be on letterhead, dated, and signed physically or with an electronic signature. Include the name of the nominee in the filenames.

Instructions for submitting a nomination are included in the APS Prize & Award Nomination Guidelines.

2021 Selection Committee members: Daniel Lathrop (Chair), Nigel Goldenfeld ('20 Recipient), Susan Coppersmith, Robert Ecke, Greg Huber 

Selection Committee Composition Description: The selection committee is composed of six people, three of whom are representatives from the GSNP Executive Committee, and three additional members from the international statistical physics and nonlinear physics community.

Serving a diverse and inclusive community of physicists worldwide is a primary goal for APS. Nominations of qualified women, members of underrepresented minority groups, and scientists from outside the United States are especially encouraged.

Nominees and award and office holders are expected to meet standards of professional conduct and integrity as described in the APS Ethics Guidelines. Violations of these standards may disqualify people from consideration or lead to revocation of honors or removal from office.

2020 Recipient

Nigel Goldenfeld
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Nigel Goldenfeld

Past Recipients

2019: M. Cristina Marchetti