The Blavatnik National Awards, first awarded in 2014, were established by the Blavatnik Family Foundation and administered by the New York Academy of Sciences, recognize and support America’s top scientific innovators in the life sciences, physical sciences and engineering, and chemistry. The finalists will compete for the three spots as the 2018 Blavatnik National Laureates, an honor that comes with an unrestricted cash prize of $250,000, the largest prize of its kind for early career scientists. The awards will be announced on June 26, 2019 and the laureates will be honored at the Blavatnik National Awards on September 23, 2019, at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.
Duan was a National Finalist for the award in 2015 and 2018. The only other UCLA faculty members to be National Finalists for the awards have been Professor Neil Garg in 2018 and Professor Aydogan Ozcan (Department of Electrical Engineering) in 2014, 2015, and 2016.