The International Balzan Prize Foundation’s aim is to promote culture, the sciences and the most meritorious initiatives in the cause of humanity, peace and fraternity among peoples throughout the world.

Currently, four annual awards are made: two in literature, moral sciences and the arts; and two in the physical, mathematical and natural sciences and medicine. In 2001, regulations concerning the prizes were changed, and prize winners must now destine half of their awards for research projects carried out preferably by young humanists and scientists.

At intervals of not less than three years, the Balzan Foundation also awards a prize for Humanity, Peace and Fraternity among Peoples.

The Balzan Foundation acts jointly through two Foundations: one with headquarters in Milan and the other with headquarters in Zurich. At the “Prize” Foundation in Milan, the General Prize Committee, which is composed of eminent European scholars and scientists, chooses the subject areas of the awards and makes the nominations. The “Fund” Foundation in Zurich administers Eugenio Balzan’s estate.
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