In addition to the Nobel Prizes in Physics and Chemistry, The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences also awards the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel. The Economic Sciences Prize Committee does the work of finding, investigating and evaluating nominees for the Prize. However, it is the Academy as a whole that decides on the Prize.
Work on appointing Laureates in Economic Sciences generally follows the same procedure as the Nobel Prizes in Physics and in Chemistry.
In September, the committee sends invitations to people who can suggest nominees for the following year’s Prize. The invitations are sent to thousands of specially selected university professors and other scholars in the field, all around the globe. Members of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and previous Laureates in Economic Sciences may also propose nominees. However, it is not possible to spontaneously submit a proposal without receiving an invitation.
Reviewing the nominees
The Economic Sciences Prize Committee then reviews the proposals it receives. The committee is made up of members of the Academy, primarily economists or other members of the Academy’s Class for social sciences, but it may also have members and co-opted members who have the necessary expertise and are from other organisations inside or outside the Academy. The five members are elected for three years at a time, with a term limit of nine years.
The committee also consults specially appointed international experts to evaluate specific contributions in areas that are potentially of interest for the Prize. The committee holds around ten full or half-day meetings every year.
Who can receive the Prize?
The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel must be awarded to the person(s) who have performed work of the highest significance in the economic sciences. A maximum of three people may share the Prize.
How the Academy makes the decision
When the committee has arrived at a proposal, they motivate this in an extensive report to the Academy’s Class for social sciences. The class discusses the proposal on several occasions and may request changes or present a different proposal to that of the committee.
After the position of the classes is clarified, the committee presents the proposal to the members of the Academy at a meeting in early October. All Swedish members (and foreign members who are resident in Sweden) present at the meeting may vote on the proposals. The final decision about this years’ Prize in Economic Sciences is then made. Immediately after the meeting, the Secretary General calls the Laureate/Laureates, and thereafter, at noon on the same day the decision was made, it is announced at a press conference.