IN THE WORDS OF
HRH PRINCE KHALID ALFAISAL
CHAIRMAN, KING FAISAL PRIZE BOARD

The greatness of a nation is not measured by the size of its material possessions, but by its role in the progress of mankind. The Islamic nation has established its prominent place in history not through its material resources, but through its vast contributions to the present civilization. Similarly, the greatness of an individual is not the result of noble descent, but of accomplishments and purpose in life. These were the principles for which Faisal bin Abdulaziz lived, and for which he was martyred. Not only was he a great monarch but also a great missionary of justice and peace, a man of purpose, intellect and passion. The establishment of the King Faisal Foundation, and the inception of the King Faisal Prize as one of the Foundation’s projects, drew from the humanitarian and noble values of Islam, which King Faisal held throughout his life. The prize seeks to realize some of his aspirations for the progress of mankind, and particularly his desire to emphasize the role of Arabs and Muslims towards that progress. The prize was inaugurated 36 years ago, initially in three fields: Service to Islam, Islamic Studies and Arabic Literature. Two additional prizes, Medicine and Science, soon followed.

THE PRIZE

Launched by the King Faisal Foundation (KFF) and granted for the first time in 1979, the King Faisal Prize (KFP) recognizes the outstanding works of individuals and institutions in five major categories: Service to IslamIslamic StudiesArabic Language and LiteratureMedicine, and Science. Its aim is to benefit Muslims in their present and future, inspire them to participate in all aspects of civilization, as well as enrich human knowledge and develop mankind. KFP laureates are evaluated only based on merit and their works are meticulously examined by specialized selection committees. The strict selection procedure meets international standards, and many of the laureates who have been awarded the prize went on to receive other prestigious prizes, such as the Nobel Prize.
 

 

 

The greatness of an individual is not the result of noble descent, but of accomplishments and purpose in life.

Prince Khalid Alfaisal

Chairman, King Faisal Prize Board  

The greatness of an individual is not the result of noble descent, but of accomplishments and purpose in life.

Prince Khalid Alfaisal

Chairman, King Faisal Prize Board

AT A GLANCE

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years of contribution
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laureates
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nationalities

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> Click on location points to learn more about laureates' nationalities

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2022 LAUREATES'

SERVICE TO ISLAM

(Arab Republic of Egypt )

and

(United Republic of Tanzania)

ISLAMIC STUDIES

Islamic Heritage of Al-Andalus

ARABIC LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE

(United States of America )

and

(United States of America )

Arabic Literature Studies in English

MEDICINE

(United States of America )

Gene Editing Technologies

SCIENCE

(Tunisia)

and

(United Kingdom)

Mathematics

THE YEARLY CYCLE

> Click on each number to learn more

1

TOPICS ANNOUNCED

Topics for each of the scientific categories of the prize are chosen, and invitations to various scientific organizations from around the world to nominate whom they believe are worthy of the prize are sent.

2

WINNERS SELECTION

Nominations are made by institutions specialized in their respective fields
Nominations are sorted to ensure compliance with the Prize criteria
Nominations are reviewed according to the highest standards
Nominations are sent to international referees for evaluation
Final decision is made based on merit and recommendations

3

WINNERS ANNOUNCED

In January, after the Selection Committees conclude their meetings, Prince Khalid Al-Faisal announces the names of the winners.

4

AWARD CEREMONY

The winners are invited to receive their awards during a ceremony held for this purpose, under the auspices of the King of Saudi Arabia.

A Brief History of the

King Faisal Prize

ACROSS THE YEARS

30th anniversary of the King Faisal International Prize, where all previous winners were invited to attend.
Professor Fuat M. Sezgin, winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Islamic Studies, 1979 (1399H)
Shaikh Sayyid Abul A’la Al-Mawdodi, winner of the King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam, 1979 (1399H)
Professor David C. Morley, the first winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Medicine, 1982 (1402H)
Professor Sir Michael J. Berridge, one of the first winners of the King Faisal International prize in Science, 1986 (1406H)
Professor Janet D. Rawley, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Medicine, and the first female winner, 1988 (1408H)
Professor Ahmed H. Zewail, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Science, 1989 (1409H)
Dr. Francois Barré-Sinoussi, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Medicine, 1993 (1413H)
President Alija Izetbegoviç, winner of the King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam, 1993 (1413H)
Professor Aisha Abdulrahman, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Arabic Language and Literature, 1994 (1414H)
Professor Wadad A. Kadi, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Arabic Language and Literature, 1994 (1414H)
Mrs. Salma L. Al-Kowzbari, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Arabic Language and Literature, 1995 (1415H)
Hon. Dr. Mahathir bin Muhammad, winner of the King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam, 1997 (1417H)
H.E. President Abdou Diouf, winner of the King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam, 1998 (1418H)
Professor Makarim Ghamri, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Arabic Language and Literature, 1999 (1419H)
A group photograph of the winners of the King Faisal International Prize in 2000 (1420H)
Professor Cynthia Kenyon of the King Faisal International Prize in Medicine, 2000 (1420H)
Professor Ibrahim Abd Al-Rahim Al Saafin, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Arabic Language and Literature, 2001 (1421H)
Sultan Ibn Abdulaziz Al Saud Foundation, winner of the King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam, 2003 (1423H)
Professor Carol Hillenbrand, winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Islamic Studies, 2005 (1425H)
The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abd Allah bin Abdulaziz, winner of the King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam, 2008 (1428H)
Professor Johanne Martel-Pelletier, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Medicine, 2010 (1430H)
Professor Shinya Yamanaka, co-winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Medicine, 2011 (1431H), who went on to receive a Nobel Prize two years later.
Professor Alexander J. Varshavsky, winner of the King Faisal International Prize in Biology, 2012 (1432H)
A group photograph of the winners of the King Faisal International prize in 2008 (1428H), amongst the winners is King Abd Allah Bin Abdulaziz.
The early years of the King Faisal International Prize, from left to right, Prince Khalid Alfaisal, Prince Abdallah Alfaisal, King Fahad Bin Abdulaziz, Prince Sultan Bin Abdulaziz.
H.M. King Khalid Bin Abdulaziz, the first King to receive the King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam, 1981 (1401H)
The King Faisal International Prize, in cooperation with The Royal Society, held a Symposium in London entitled “ Science and Medicine in the 21st Century- A Global Perspective”. The event celebrated the 10th anniversary of the Science and Medicine Prizes. The photograph shows the previous winners of this prize.
The King Faisal Foundation held, in cooperation with Al-Azhar Mosque in Cairo, a symposium entitled “Islam and the Arab Culture in the New World” in 1995 (1415H) and it was attended by many guests and previous winners of the King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam, Islamic Studies, and Arabic Literature.
King Fahad Bin Abdulaziz awards the 1987 (1407H) King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam to Sheikh Abubakar Mahmud Gumi. The distinguished laureate is Nigeria’s Grand Mufti and Supreme Advisor on Islamic Affairs.
A group photograph of the winners of the King Faisal International prize in 2015 (1436H), amongst the winners is King Salman Bin Abdulaziz.
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