Two journalists, Maria Ressa and Dmitry Muratov shared the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday. They were recognized for their fights for freedom of expression in the Philippines and Russia, respectively.
Ressa was the only female Nobel laureate in 2021. This year, the Nobel Committee recognized Muratov and eleven additional men in the areas of physics, chemistry, medicine, literature, and economics.
The chart, based on Nobel Foundation data, demonstrates that women continue to be underrepresented among Nobel Laureates, despite their increasing numbers among those honored. While women made up only 4% of laureates between 1901 and 1920, they made up 13.5% between 2001 and 2020. The most recent years without a female Nobel laureate were 2017, 2016, and 2012.
34 women were awarded the Nobel Prize for literature or peace, compared to 25 in the sciences, despite the latter’s broader scope and more frequent designation of multiple winners.
Over the years, the overall number of Nobel Prizes awarded has increased as multiple winners became more usual and also as a result of the addition of the economics prize in 1969. Several categories were suspended during World War I, while the event was suspended entirely between 1940 and 1942 due to World War II.
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