The Nobel Prize is one of the world’s most prestigious awards bestowed by Swedish and Norwegian Committees upon people who are highly commendable in their chosen fields.
According to Nobel Prize’s official website, Swedish Inventor Alfred Nobel signed his last will and testament on November 27, 1895. In his will, he gave “the largest share of his fortune to a series of prizes in Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine, Literature and Peace” — which are the Nobel Prizes.
In memory of the Swedish inventor, Sveriges Riksbank, Sweden’s central bank, established in 1968 the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences.
The first nobel prizes were awarded in 1901. From 1901 – 2014, 860 laureates and 22 unique organizations have been awarded the Nobel Prize.
But, how does one win a Nobel Prize?
The six prizes undergo the same awarding process but differs in who may nominate the person or organization.
Nomination in the Nobel Prize in Physics, Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Literature, Nobel Prize in Medicine, and Prize in the Economic Science is “by invitation only.” The assigned committees “sends confidential forms or invitation letters to persons who are competent and qualified to nominate.”
Nominations in the Nobel Prize in the Peace Prize must meet the criteria of qualified nominators. He or she does not need any letter of invitation.
Qualified nominators must meet a certain criteria as assigned by the Nobel Prize committees. “No one can nominate himself or herself” as posted on the website. Moreover, nominations will only be revealed after 50 years.
Nominations will be made from September until February. The committees will then have a consultation with experts from March to May.
It will be followed by the writing of the report from June until August. Committees will then submit their recommendation forms by September.
Nobel Prizes are awarded through majority votes and announced in October. They will receive their prize on December in a ceremony at Stockholm, Sweden.
The prize consists of “a Nobel medal, Diploma, and a document confirming the amount of the prize.”
In the statutes of the Nobel Foundation, a prize may be awarded and divided “in no more than three persons.” In case there is no qualified awardee, “the prize money shall be reserved until the following year” or “added to the restricted funds.
For 2015, the Nobel Prize in Medicine awardees are William C. Campbell, Satoshi Omura, and Tu Youyou.
New York Times notes that these three scientists “used modern laboratory techniques to discover anti-parasitic drugs long hidden in herbs and soil.”
Meanwhile, the Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded to Takaaki Kajita and Arthur McDonald, for their discovery that “neutrinos have mass.”
The awardees for other Nobel Prizes are yet to be announced.