The main purpose of the Holberg Prize is to recognize path breaking scientific work in the humanities, social sciences, law and theology. The prize may be awarded both for work within a particular academic discipline and for work of a cross disciplinary nature. The prize shall in addition contribute to raising the status of these disciplines in society and to stimulating interest in these fields among children and young people.
The Holberg Prize is administered by the University of Bergen on behalf of the Ministry of Education and Research. The University of Bergen shall provide a broad basis for the Prize and related activities by involving relevant actors and milieus, nationally and internationally.
The Holberg Prize is funded by the Government Budget through a direct allocation from the Ministry of Education and Research to the University of Bergen. The allocation shall be used for:
- The Holberg Prize
- A Nordic Prize for younger researchers (the Nils Klim Prize)
- Activities aimed at children and young people.
- Events related to the prize award ceremonies
The University of Bergen reports annually to the Ministry of Education and Research about the use of the funds. The University of Bergen may organize the work related to the Holberg Prize as it sees fit, within the framework of these statutes.
The University of Bergen appoints two academic committees, the Holberg Committee and the Nils Klim Committee. Each committee consists of five outstanding researchers in the humanities, social sciences, law and theology. Each committee shall have at least three non-Norwegian members. The academic committee members are appointed for a period of three years and may be reappointed once. Three members of each committee are appointed one year and two the following year. If a member withdraws before the end of his/her period, a new member shall be appointed for the rest of the period.
The University of Bergen considers annually whether the Prize shall be announced for all fields covered by the Prize or within one or more specific areas. The University of Bergen appoints a winner of the Holberg Prize based on the recommendation of the Holberg Committee. The University of Bergen appoints a winner of the Nils Klim Prize based on the recommendation of the Nils Klim Committee. The recommendations of the committees shall be based on expert assessments. If the committees one year are unable to identify a worthy prize winner, the prizes shall not be awarded and the funds allocated to the prize winner shall be returned to the Ministry of Education and Research.
The statutes for the Holberg Prize and the Nils Klim Prize may be amended by the Ministry of Education and Research.
Ministry of Education and Research