Based in Stockholm
, Sweden, the Nobel Foundation
had decided to reduce the value of the 2012 prize, due to economic difficulties.
While still a coveted prize, Nobel winners this year will receive 8 million Swedish kronor (about $1.1 million) each, as compared to the 10 million Swedish kronor, or $1.4 million, received last year.
The Nobel Foundation is trying to safeguard the long-term capital of the organization.
executive director Lars Heikensten says, "The Nobel Foundation is responsible for ensuring that the prize sum can be maintained at a high level in the long term. We have made the assessment that it is important to implement necessary measures in good time."
The capital held by the Nobel Foundation is based on a donation by 19th century philanthropist and inventor Alfred Nobel
. In the current economic crisis, smart management is required to secure the future of this prestigious award. Organizers are coping with economic instability, particularly in the equity markets where the Foundation traditionally places a high concentration of its assets.
"We have traditionally held a high proportion of equity and that has not given a good return over the last decade," Heikensten said.
This action comes just as Myanmar opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi
prepares to finally receive in person her Nobel Peace prize.
The prize was awarded in her absence in 1991, as she was under house arrest
by Myanmar's former military regime for almost two decades. When she was free, she feared to travel abroad, in case the junta would not let her return to the country.
Winners will receive a diploma and a medal, as well as the reduced amount of cash.
The last time the Nobel Foundation lowered the amount of the prize was in 1949.