Why this year’s Ig Nobel ceremony will be entirely online

People ask us why this year’s (2021) Ig Nobel Prize ceremony will, like last year’s, happen entirely online rather than in the usual big-theater-with-an-audience. Why? Because if you’re organizing a public event, especially an event involving people traveling from many countries, you are aware that this (see news item by Axios, July 8, 2021) kind of thing can happen:

There is another reason, too.

During this pandemic era, travel plans bring loads of uncertainty. In non-pandemic times, the ten new Ig Nobel Prize winners  travel (in secrecy) from their homes, in whatever countries, to Sanders Theatre, at Harvard University, in Cambridge Massachusetts, USA.  Some of those winners are teams, rather than individuals. And a few days after the ceremony, they travel back to their homes. The logistics of all this are daunting, to say the least.

UPDATE (2022): This also applies to the year 2022, unfortunately!