Art + Culture

京都賞 Kyoto Prize

The Kyoto Prize (京都賞 Kyōto-shō) is Japan’s highest private award for global achievement. The Kyoto Prize is given not only to those that are top representatives of their own respective field, but also to those that have contributed to humanity with their work. The Kyoto Prizes are regarded by many as the most prestigious award available in fields that are traditionally not honored with a Nobel Prize. The Prize has been awarded annually since 1985 by the Inamori Foundation, founded by Kazuo Enamor. The honorary president of the Foundation is Princess Takamado.The Kyoto Prize has been awarded annually to “those who have contributed significantly to the scientific, cultural, and spiritual betterment of mankind”. The Prizes are given in the fields of Advanced Technology, Basic Sciences, and Arts and Philosophy. Within each broad category, the prize rotates among subfields, e.g. the Kyoto Prize in Advanced Technology rotates across electronics, biotechnology, materials science and engineering, and information science. The Prizes are regarded by many as the most prestigious award available in fields that are traditionally not honored with a Nobel Prize. The laureates are announced each June; the prize presentation ceremony and related events are held in Kyoto, Japan, each November. The Prizes were endowed with 100 million yen per category (roughly some US$ 880,000).

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