Princess of Asturias Awards

Princess of Asturias Awards
Princess of Asturias Foundation Emblem.svg

The Princess of Asturias Awards[1] (Spanish: Premios Princesa de Asturias, Asturian: Premios Princesa d'Asturies), formerly the Prince of Asturias Awards from 1981 to 2014 (Spanish: Premios Príncipe de Asturias), are a series of annual prizes awarded in Spain by the Princess of Asturias Foundation (previously the Prince of Asturias Foundation) to individuals, entities or organizations from around the world who make notable achievements in the sciences, humanities, and public affairs.

The awards are presented every October in a solemn ceremony at the Campoamor Theatre in Oviedo, the capital of the Principality of Asturias, and are handed out by the Princess of Asturias. Each recipient present at the ceremony receives a diploma, a sculpture expressly created for the awards by Spanish sculptor Joan Miró and a pin with the emblem of the Foundation. There is also a monetary prize of 50,000 euros for each category, this amount is shared if the category has more that one recipient.

In 2005, for the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Prince of Asturias Awards, UNESCO made a groundbreaking declaration acknowledging "the outstanding contribution of the Prince of Asturias Awards to Mankind's cultural heritage".[2]


The Princess of Asturias Awards Ceremony is celebrated in the Campoamor Theatre of Oviedo

The Prince of Asturias Awards were established on 24 September 1980, with the creation of the Prince of Asturias Foundation, in a ceremony presided by Felipe, Prince of Asturias, then heir to the throne of Spain, "to consolidate links between the Principality and the Prince of Asturias, and to contribute to, encourage and promote scientific, cultural and humanistic values that form part of mankind's universal heritage".[3]

Following the accession of the Prince as King of Spain on 19 June 2014, it was announced that from 2015, the foundation and the awards are to be renamed the Princess of Asturias Awards to reflect the new heiress presumptive to the Spanish throne, Leonor, Princess of Asturias.[4] King Felipe will continue to preside over the awards ceremony until the Princess of Asturias reaches majority age on 31 October 2023. Princess Leonor first attended the ceremony, handed out awards to winners and delivered her first speech ever as heiress to the crown during the 39th Princess of Asturias Awards Ceremony on 18 October 2019. Her father, then Prince Felipe, did the same during the 1st Prince of Asturias Awards Ceremony on 31 October 1981.

If a laureate does not attend to the ceremony to collect the award he does not receive nor the sculpture nor the monetary prize, even if the absence is because of force majeure. Only a few laureates have not attended, among them are Bob Dylan, that refused to go to Oviedo in 2007 but asked for the sculpture unsuccessfully, writter Philip Roth in 2012 for medical justified reasons and Pau and Marc Gasol in 2015 that were not allowed to attend by their NBA teams.[5]