OSLO, Oct 9: The winner of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize will be announced Friday at 11 a.m. (0900 GMT) in Oslo, with no shortage of causes or candidates on this year’s list.
While the Norwegian Nobel Committee maintains absolute secrecy about whom it favors for arguably the world’s most prestigious prize, that has never stopped speculation ahead of the announcement.
Guesses — and bets — this year have focused on Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, Russian dissident Alexei Navalny, recovering from a nerve agent attack he blames on Russian President Vladimir Putin, and the World Health Organization for its role in addressing the coronavirus pandemic.
Even U.S. President Donald Trump seems to believe he deserves the prize, though one of the few predictions that pundits feel comfortable making is that he’ll be disappointed.
There are 318 candidates — 211 individuals and 107 organizations. Nominations can be made by a select group, including national lawmakers, heads of state and certain international institutions.
The deadline for nominations was Feb. 1, which means that those on the front lines of fighting COVID-19 — which was only declared a pandemic in March — appear unlikely contenders.
Along with enormous prestige, the prize comes with a 10-milion krona ($1.1 million) cash award and a gold medal to be handed out at a ceremony in Oslo, Norway, on Dec. 10, the anniversary of prize founder Alfred Nobel’s death. This year’s ceremony will be scaled down due to the pandemic.
On Monday, the Nobel Committee awarded the prize for physiology and medicine for discovering the liver-ravaging hepatitis C virus. Tuesday’s prize for physics honored breakthroughs in understanding the mysteries of cosmic black holes, and the chemistry prize on Wednesday went to scientists behind a powerful gene-editing tool. The literature prize was awarded to American poet Louise Glück on Thursday for her “candid and uncompromising” work.
Still to come next week is the prize for outstanding work in the field of economics.