This list of Nobel laureates affiliated with Kyoto University comprehensively shows the alumni, faculty members as well as researchers of Kyoto University who were awarded the Nobel Prize or the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. The Nobel Prizes, established by the 1895 will of Alfred Nobel, are awarded to individuals who make outstanding contributions in the fields of Chemistry, Literature, Peace, Physics, and Physiology or Medicine. An associated prize, the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel (commonly known as the Nobel Prize in Economics), was instituted by Sweden's central bank, Sveriges Riksbank, in 1968 and first awarded in 1969.
As of October 2019[update], 19 Nobel laureates have been affiliated with Kyoto University, 10 of them are officially listed as "Kyoto's Nobel Laureates" by the university. Among the 19 laureates, 9 are Kyoto alumni (graduates and attendees), and 5 have been long-term academic members of the university faculty. Subject-wise, 8 laureates have won the Nobel Prize in Physics, more than any other subject.
The university affiliations in this list are all official academic affiliations such as degree programs and official academic employment. Non-academic affiliations such as advisory committee and administrative staff are generally excluded. The official academic affiliations fall into three categories: 1) Alumni (graduates and attendees), 2) Long-term Academic Staff, and 3) Short-term Academic Staff. Graduates are defined as those who hold Bachelor's, Master's, Doctorate, or equivalent degrees from the Kyoto University, while attendees are those who formally enrolled in a degree program at Kyoto but did not complete the program; thus, honorary degrees, posthumous degrees, summer attendees, exchange students, and auditing students are excluded. The category of "Long-term Academic Staff" consists of tenure/tenure-track and equivalent academic positions, while that of "Short-term Academic Staff" consists of lecturers (without tenure), postdoctoral researchers (postdocs), visiting professors/scholars (visitors), and equivalent academic positions. At Kyoto, the specific academic title solely determines the type of affiliation, regardless of the actual time the position was held by a laureate.
Further explanations on "visitors" under "Short-term Academic Staff" are presented as follows. 1) All informal or personal visits are excluded from the list; 2) all employment-based visiting positions, which carry teaching/research duties, are included as affiliations in the list; 3) as for award/honor-based visiting positions, to minimize controversy this list takes a conservative view and includes the positions as affiliations only if the laureates were required to assume employment-level duty (teaching/research) or the laureates specifically classified the visiting positions as "affiliation" or similar in reliable sources such as their curriculum vita. In particular, attending meetings and giving public lectures, talks or non-curricular seminars at Kyoto University is not a form of employment-level duty. Finally, summer visitors are generally excluded from the list unless summer work yielded significant end products such as research publications and components of Nobel-winning work, since summer terms are not part of formal academic years.
|Category||Official Count||Others with KU related||Total||Remarks|
|Physics||4||4||8||Hideki Yukawa is also the first Japanese Nobel laureate|
|Physiology or Medicine||3||1||4|
The Nobel Prize winner of Kyoto University includes 10 official alumni and faculty members. In the broadest sense, 19 people are as follows:
|"for his prediction of the existence of mesons on the basis of theoretical work on nuclear forces".|
|1955||Willis Lamb||Visiting Fellow (1960)||"for his discoveries concerning the fine structure of the hydrogen spectrum" – shared with Polykarp Kusch.|
|1965||Sin-Itiro Tomonaga||Alumnus||"for their fundamental work in quantum electrodynamics, with deep-ploughing consequences for the physics of elementary particles" – shared with Julian Schwinger and Richard Feynman.|
|2003||Anthony James Leggett||Group member of Prof. Takeo Matsubara (1965-66)||"for pioneering contributions to the theory of superconductors and superfluids"" – shared with Alexei Alexeyevich Abrikosov and Vitaly Lazarevich Ginzburg.|
|2005||Theodor W. Hänsch||Visiting Professor (1979)||"for their contributions to the development of laser-based precision spectroscopy, including the optical frequency comb technique" – shared with Roy J. Glauber and John L. Hall.|
|2008||Makoto Kobayashi||Faculty (1972-1979)||"for the discovery of the origin of the broken symmetry which predicts the existence of at least three families of quarks in nature" – shared with Yoichiro Nambu and Toshihide Maskawa.|
|Toshihide Maskawa||Faculty (1980-2003); honorary professor||"for the discovery of the origin of the broken symmetry which predicts the existence of at least three families of quarks in nature" – shared with Yoichiro Nambu and Makoto Kobayashi.|
|2014||Isamu Akasaki||Alumnus||"for the invention of efficient blue light-emitting diodes which has enabled bright and energy-saving white light sources" – shared with Hiroshi Amano and Shuji Nakamura.|
|1981||Kenichi Fukui||Alumnus; D.Eng
|"for their theories, developed independently, concerning the course of chemical reactions" – shared with Roald Hoffmann.|
|2000||Alan MacDiarmid||Visiting Fellow||"for the discovery and development of conductive polymers" – shared with Alan J. Heeger and Hideki Shirakawa.|
|2001||Ryōji Noyori||Alumnus; D.Eng||"for their work on chirally catalysed hydrogenation reactions" – shared with William Knowles and Barry Sharpless.|
|2004||Aaron Ciechanover||Visiting Fellow (2000)||"for the discovery of ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation" – shared with Avram Hershko and Irwin Rose.|
|2019||Akira Yoshino||Alumnus; MS||"for the development of lithium-ion batteries" – shared with John B. Goodenough and M. Stanley Whittingham.|
|1987||Susumu Tonegawa||Alumnus||"for his discovery of the genetic principle for generation of antibody diversity."|
|2012||Shinya Yamanaka||Faculty||"for the discovery that mature cells can be reprogrammed to become pluripotent" – shared with John B. Gurdon.|
|2016||Yoshinori Ohsumi||Graduate school attended (1970s)||"for his discoveries of mechanisms for autophagy".|
|"for their discovery of cancer therapy by inhibition of negative immune regulation" – shared with James P. Allison.|
|1991||Aung San Suu Kyi||Visiting fellow (1985-1986)||"for her non-violent struggle for democracy and human rights".|
|2009||Oliver Williamson||Visiting Professor (1983)||"for his analysis of economic governance, especially the boundaries of the firm" – shared with Elinor Ostrom.|