What do You get for Winning the Nobel Prize?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: Niki Foster
  • Last Modified Date: 17 May 2020
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In addition to immense prestige, Nobel Prize laureates also receive more concrete benefits. The Nobel Prize includes the Nobel medal, a diploma, and a monetary award. Prizes are generally awarded in Stockholm, with the exception of the Peace Prize, which is awarded in Oslo. The prize is always distributed on 10 December, the anniversary of Alfred Nobel's death, and laureates are announced in October.

The Nobel Prize includes the prize itself, made of 18-karat green gold plated with 24-karat gold and cast by the Swedish mint. The design of the Physics and Chemistry, Physiology and Medicine, and Peace prizes, featuring Alfred Nobel on the front and a symbol of the area in which the prize was awarded on the back, along with a motto in Latin, has been in use since 1902. The laureate's name is also engraved either directly on the back of the metal or along the edge, depending on the prize. The Nobel Prize is presented in a protective case.

With the Nobel Prize comes a diploma, in calligraphy, in either Swedish or Norwegian depending upon the prize. The striking diplomas can be considered works of art, and many famous artists and calligraphers have worked on them. The Swedish diplomas include a citation explaining why the prize was awarded to the recipient, while the Norwegian ones are traditionally plain. The designs of the diplomas have varied over the years and differ depending upon what the prize was awarded for. Many of the diplomas also include customized artwork commemorating the laureates for that year.

Nobel Prize winners also receive a cash prize, which in 2005 was ten million Swedish Kroner, or approximately 1.3 million US dollars. This amount is confirmed on the Nobel Prize diploma, and traditionally, laureates donate this sum back to scientific, cultural, or humanitarian causes, though this is not obligatory. In the case of two prize winners in one category, the sum is split between them – if there are three, the prize is split three ways, or more rarely, one winner receives half the money and the remainder is split between the other two.

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Post 5

Alfred Nobel, in whose memory the prizes are awarded, created a trust to be used for investment, and the returns were since being used to make up the monetary awards for the winners.

Post 4

I read that there were a few Nobel Prize winners who declined the Prize because they didn't feel that they deserved it. And then there have been others who were either forced to decline the Prize because of their national governments or didn't collect the Prize on time and lost out on the monetary award.

Post 3

@fBoyle-- I'm not entirely sure if the Nobel Prize monetary award is no-strings-attached. I've heard that for the most part, winners of the Nobel Prize can do whatever they want with it. That includes things like buying a house or a car. But I've also heard that in some countries, like the US, Nobel Prize winners have to give some of the award to the government as tax. I think can be up to half of the award in the US.

Individuals usually decide what they want to do with the money. But if the Nobel Prize winner is an organization or a union, such as the European Union, the money is usually spent for social causes like child welfare.

What I would like to know is where the Nobel Prize organizers get all the money. Donations perhaps?

Post 2

I had no idea that people who win the Nobel Prize also get a monetary reward. I thought it was just a prestige prize with a medal.

I don't imagine that people who are considered for the Nobel Prize are the type of people that would want the Prize for the money. I personally would be just happy with the status and prestige of having won a Nobel Prize. Although, for scientist the money reward can be a great way to do more research and run more experiments. I am surprised by the amount of the monetary reward though. That's a lot of money!

Do the Nobel Prize organizers check on how that money is being spent after it is awarded?

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