2015 – Akira Isogai, Tsuguyuki Saito, Japan, and Yoshiharu Nishiyama, France

for their ground-breaking research on TEMPO-mediated oxidation of cellulose fibre and further exploitation of this oxidation as a tool to produce nanofibrillated cellulose from wood pulp in an energy-efficient way. Their innovative work has strongly intensified the interest for industrially attractive production of nanofibrillated cellulose (NFC) and the development of commercial applications throughout the world. Production of nanofibrillated cellulose and development of new NFC-based value chains is opening up considerable future business opportunities to the global forest-based sector.