Nobel Prize

From Metapedia
Jump to: navigation, search

The Nobel Prize is an annual, international award originating in Sweden.


The award was established in 1895 by the Swedish chemist and inventor of dynamite Alfred Bernhard Nobel.[1][2] It was first awarded in 1901 for achievements in Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine, Literature, and Peace. An associated prize, the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, was instituted by Sweden's central bank in 1968 and first awarded in 1969.[3][4] Although the Nobel Prize in Economics is not technically a Nobel Prize, its winners are announced with the Nobel Prize recipients and it is presented at the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony. The Nobel Prizes in the specific disciplines (physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, and literature) and the Prize in Economics are widely regarded as the most prestigious award one can receive in those fields.[3]

A recipient of the Nobel Prize (called a laureate) earns a gold medal, a diploma bearing a citation and a sum of money.[5][6] The amount of money awarded depends on the income of the Nobel Foundation that year. In 2009, the amount was 10 million SEK (US$1.4 million) per prize.[7] If a prize is awarded to more than one laureate, the money is either split evenly among them or, for three laureates, it can be divided into a half and two quarters.[8]

The prizes are awarded by different associations. The Nobel Prize in Physics, Nobel Prize in Chemistry, and Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences are awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences; the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine by the Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institutet; and the Nobel Prize in Literature by the Swedish Academy.[9][10] The Nobel Peace Prize is not awarded by a Swedish organisation, but by the Norwegian Nobel Committee.[9][10]

Selection Process

Selection Process of the Nobel Prize Organization states that

  • At the first meeting of the Nobel Committee after the 1 February deadline for nominations, the Committee's Permanent Secretary presents the list of the year's candidates. The Committee may on that occasion add further names to the list, after which the nomination process is closed, and discussion of the particular candidates begins. In the light of this first review, the Committee draws up the so-called short list - i.e. the list of candidates selected for more thorough consideration. The short list typically contains from twenty to thirty candidates.
  • The candidates on the short list are then considered by the Nobel Institute's permanent advisers. In addition to the Institute's Director and Research Director, the body of advisers generally consists of a small group of Norwegian university professors with broad expertise in subject areas with a bearing on the Peace Prize. The advisers usually have a couple of months in which to draw up their reports. Reports are also occasionally requested from other Norwegian and foreign experts.
  • When the advisers' reports have been presented, the Nobel Committee embarks on a thorough-going discussion of the most likely candidates. In the process, the need often arises to obtain additional information and updates about candidates from additional experts, often foreign. As a rule, the Committee reaches a decision only at its very last meeting before the announcement of the Prize at the beginning of October.


Especially the Nobel Peace Prize selections have been criticized for various reasons. Another criticism has been regarding the high Jewish over-representation.

"Higher IQs and preferential choice of science as a profession among Jews do not fully explain this J-bias. It is more likely that extensive and well-organized personal networking of a marketing type among Jewish scientists, together with the egalitarian-liberal, nonchalant attitude of the Swedish representatives of the Donor, are responsible for this unfortunate phenomenon."[11]


  1. The Nobel Foundation - History. Retrieved on 2010-01-15.
  2. Encyclopædia Britannica. Nobel Prize (award) - Britannica Online Encyclopedia. Retrieved on 2010-01-15.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Nobel Prize" (2007), in Encyclopædia Britannica, accessed 14 November 2007, from Encyclopædia Britannica Online:
    An additional award, the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, was established in 1968 by the Bank of Sweden and was first awarded in 1969
  4. Video - Breaking News Videos from Retrieved on 2010-01-15.
  5. Tom Rivers (2009-12-10). 2009 Nobel Laureates Receive Their Honors | Europe | English. Retrieved on 2010-01-15.
  6. 2009 Nobel laureates receive their prizes- China - News Brief. Newsgd. Retrieved on 2010-01-15.
  7. The Nobel Prize Amounts. Retrieved on 2010-01-15.
  8. "Nobel Prize - Prizes" (2007), in Encyclopædia Britannica, accessed 15 January 2009, from Encyclopædia Britannica Online:
    Each Nobel Prize consists of a gold medal, a diploma bearing a citation, and a sum of money, the amount of which depends on the income of the Nobel Foundation. (A sum of $1,300,000 accompanied each prize in 2005.) A Nobel Prize is either given entirely to one person, divided equally between two persons, or shared by three persons. In the latter case, each of the three persons can receive a one-third share of the prize or two together can receive a one-half share.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Agneta Wallin Levinovitz: 2001, Page 164
  10. 10.0 10.1 Clas Barkman, "What would Alfred Nobel have said?", December 2007 ): accessed 15 January 2009.
  11. The Jewish Bias of the Nobel Prize