Ig Nobel Prize winners in 2018

In this article I will explain to you what the Ig Nobel Prize is. I will list all “Anti Nobel Prize” winners in 2018 and see what their research was about and what results they got.

The Ig Nobel Prize was created and named by Marc Abrahams, The name of the prize is a pun on the word ignoble. The aim of the Ig Noble Prize is to draw attention to unusual researches. Every year in autumn 10 types of research are awarded.

The awards are supported by

  • Harvard-Radcliffe Society of Physics and
  • Harvard-Radcliffe Science Fiction Association.

The 10 winners of the different categories travel to Massachusetts at their own expense. The prize winners receive 10 trillion dollars in Zimbabwean currency and 60 seconds for an acceptance speech.

Traditionally the timekeeper is an 8-year-old girl, Miss sweetie poo, who sits during the entire ceremony on stage. If a winner speaks too long the girl approaches the winner and says “Please stop. I’m bored” until the speaker stops speaking.

Among the winners this year are researches about self-colonoscopy, how roller coaster rides affect the passage of kidney stones and if voodoo dolls can release the stress caused by abusive bosses.

The 28th annual Ig Nobel Prize ceremony took place at Harvard University. The winners were awarded by real Nobel prize winners.

Traditionally a paper flight race and the performance of a mini-opera also enhance the ceremony.

Some of the best researches

Self colonoscopy

A Japanese doctor, Horiuchi Akira won the medical education prize for creating a way of self-colonoscopy in sitting position. The experiment was published in a medical journal in 2006. 

At the awards ceremony, the 57-year-old physician caused a sense of excitement when he pulled out an endoscope and offered to present the examination in front of the audience immediately. Horiuchi than said seriously: Japan has a growing number of deaths caused by colon cancer which could be prevented with colonoscopic screening.

roller coaster - kidney stone

David Wartinger, who is a Michigan State University professor, won the medical prize. He discovered that some roller coasters can treat kidney stones: if the patient gets on a specially crafted roller coaster, the stones can pass through the urinary tract. 

voodoo doll

Lindie Liang and her colleagues at the Wilfrid Laurier University in Canada won an award for investigating workplace aggression. The essence of the experiment was that they created a virtual voodoo doll to release stress caused by abusive bosses.


Do you think they deserve the prizes? Have you heard about any other similar, somewhat unusual experiments already?

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