GRE Essay Topic 230 - Present your perspective on the issue below, "High-profile awards such as the Nobel Prize are actually damaging to society because they reinforce an unhealthy desire for recognition."
Paul Krugman is a celebrated economist who has been awarded the John Bates Clark Medal and the Nobel. The latter is awarded by the Swedish Academy. The former is awarded by the American Economic Association to the American economist, under the age of 40 who has distinctivly contrubuted to economi...
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I fundamentally disagree with the speaker assertion that people will seek recognition despite the results of their actions.
The main reason for my view is that the desire for recognition leads to competition. Human beings are naturally competitive and even a nomination to a high-profile award motivates many scientists and people in general to develop new ideas. A battle for recognition
between Edison and Westinghouse lead to the development of the actual electricity distribution system. Such an important advancement in engineering would may not be possible without the desire for recognition.
Another reason for my view is that if someone spent his time, and in some cases their whole life altruisticly helping and developing ideas that benefit humanity. They deserve such a "High-profile" award like a Nobel Prize. As an example of this we could cite Ghandi, Mother Teresa, and many others that worked so hard to help those in need.
Some might argue that this unhealthy desire for recognition can lead to weapons development like the atomic bomb. But, we must also consider that even such a disputable invention can be developed into good ideas. As the development of the atomic bomb resulted on the creation of a new form of energy "Nuclear Power".
Overall, I disagree that High-profile awards will reinforce an unhealthy desire for recognition. Therefore, anyone spending time tring to develop a new idea should be rewarded, fomenting competition between academics of all disciplines.