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Rights: The University of Waikato
Published 16 November 2007 Referencing Hub media

Sir Paul Nurse explains why technical skills is only one part of being a successful scientist and how he first got interested in science.

What is more important in a scientist: skill or passion? Sir Paul Nurse, Nobel prize winner, has a strong opinion.


School student: What skills are you looking for in the people you employ?

Sir Paul Nurse: With the scientists that work with me, I frankly look for passion. I don’t look for technical skills, because you can always teach them, but I look for passion and the ability to drive themselves. Doing science is tough and if you don’t have a passion in finding out the answer you will fall by the wayside. So they have to really want to know what is going on. I like them to be intelligent and hardworking and skilled as well, but passion first.