The Nobel Prize

The American scientist Roger D. Kornberg of Stanford University, CA, is here shown on a projection screen when the Royal Academy of Science announced the Nobel prize winner in chemistry in Stockholm on Wednesday Oct. 4, 2006.
AP Photos/Bertil Ericson
Every year since 1901 the Nobel Prize has been awarded for achievements in physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature and for peace. American Roger D. Kornberg, whose father won a Nobel Prize a half-century ago, was awarded the prize in chemistry today for his studies of how cells take information from genes to produce proteins.

What is the Nobel Prize?

The Nobel Prize is an international award administered by the Nobel Foundation in Stockholm, Sweden. In 1968, Sveriges Riksbank established The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, founder of the Nobel Prize. Each prize consists of a medal, personal diploma, and a cash award.

Click here for a list of previous Nobel winners.

Why is the Nobel Peace Prize awarded in Oslo and all the other Nobel Prizes in Stockholm?

Alfred Nobel left no explanation as to why the prize for peace was to be awarded by a Norwegian committee while the other four prizes were to be handled by Swedish committees. In the will he wrote:

"The prizes for physics and chemistry shall be awarded by the Swedish Academy of Sciences; that for physiology or medical works by the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm; that for literature by the Academy in Stockholm, and that for champions of peace by a committee of five persons to be elected by the Norwegian Storting."

What is the amount a Nobel prize recipient wins?

On November 27, 1895, a year before his death, Alfred Nobel signed the famous will which would implement some of the goals to which he had devoted so much of his life. Nobel stipulated in his will that most of his estate should be converted into a fund and invested in "safe securities."

Each 2006 prize includes a check for $1.4 million, a diploma and a medal, which will be awarded by Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf at a ceremony in Stockholm on Dec. 10.

What is the nomination process like?

Each year the respective Nobel Committees send individual invitations to thousands of members of academies, university professors, scientists from numerous countries, previous Nobel Laureates, members of parliamentary assemblies and others, asking them to submit candidates for the Nobel Prizes for the coming year. These nominators are chosen in such a way that as many countries and universities as possible are represented over time.

To learn more about the Nobel Prize:

• Click hereto read more from about the winner of the Nobel Prize in chemistry.

• You can find out more information about the Nobel committee here.

• Click here to find out more about the Nobel prizes from's interactive.