List of female Nobel laureates Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_female_Nobel_laureates

The Nobel Prizes are five separate prizes that, according to Alfred Nobel's will of 1895, are awarded to "those who, during the preceding year, have conferred the greatest benefit to Mankind."

As of 2021, 59 Nobel Prizes have been awarded to 58 women.[1][3] Unique Nobel Prize laureates include 885 men, 58 women, and 25 organizations.[4]

The distribution of Nobel prizes awarded to women is as follows:

  • eighteen women have won the Nobel Peace Prize (16.5% of 109 awarded);[5]
  • sixteen have won the Nobel Prize in Literature (13.6% of 118 awarded);[6]
  • twelve have won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (5.4% of 224 awarded);[7]
  • seven have won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry (3.7% of 188 awarded);[8]
  • four have won the Nobel Prize in Physics (1.8% of 219 awarded);[9]
  • and two, Elinor Ostrom and Esther Duflo, have won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences (2.2% of 89 awarded).[10]

The first woman to win a Nobel Prize was Marie Curie, who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1903 with her husband, Pierre Curie, and Henri Becquerel.[11][12] Curie is also the first person and the only woman to have won multiple Nobel Prizes; in 1911, she won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Curie's daughter, Irène Joliot-Curie, won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1935, making the two the only mother–daughter pair to have won Nobel Prizes.[11]

The most Nobel Prizes awarded to women in a single year was in 2009, when five women became laureates in four categories.

The most recent women to be awarded a Nobel Prize were Maria Ressa for Peace (2021), Louise Glück in Literature, Andrea M. Ghez in Physics, Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna in Chemistry (2020), Esther Duflo in Economics (2019), Donna Strickland in Physics, Frances Arnold in Chemistry, Nadia Murad for Peace, and Olga Tokarczuk in Literature (2018).

Female laureates[edit]

Year Image Laureate Country Category Rationale
1903 Marie Curie.jpg Marie Skłodowska Curie
(shared with Pierre Curie and Henri Becquerel)
Poland and France Physics "in recognition of the extraordinary services they have rendered by their joint researches on the radiation phenomena discovered by Professor Henri Becquerel."[12]
1905 Bertha von Suttner nobel.jpg Bertha von Suttner Austria-Hungary Peace "for her audacity to oppose the horrors of war."[13]
1909 Selma Lagerlöf.jpg Selma Lagerlöf Sweden Literature "in appreciation of the lofty idealism, vivid imagination and spiritual perception that characterize her writings"[14]
1911 Marie Curie.jpg Marie Skłodowska Curie Poland and France Chemistry "for her discovery of radium and polonium"[15]
1926 Grazia Deledda 1926.jpg Grazia Deledda Italy Literature "for her idealistically inspired writings which with plastic clarity picture the life on her native island and with depth and sympathy deal with human problems in general"[16]
1928 Sigrid Undset 1928.jpg Sigrid Undset Norway Literature "principally for her powerful descriptions of Northern life during the Middle Ages"[17]
1931 Jane Addams profile (cropped).jpg Jane Addams
(shared with Nicholas Murray Butler)
United States Peace "for their assiduous effort to revive the ideal of peace and to rekindle the spirit of peace in their own nation and in the whole of mankind."[18]
1935 Irène Joliot-Curie Harcourt.jpg Irène Joliot-Curie
(shared with Frédéric Joliot-Curie)
France Chemistry "for their synthesis of new radioactive elements"[19]
1938 Pearl Buck 1972.jpg Pearl S. Buck United States Literature "for her rich and truly epic descriptions of peasant life in China and for her biographical masterpieces"[20]
1945 Gabriela Mistral 3.jpg Gabriela Mistral Chile Literature "for her lyric poetry which, inspired by powerful emotions, has made her name a symbol of the idealistic aspirations of the entire Latin American world"[21]
1946 EmilyGreeneBalch.jpg Emily Greene Balch
(shared with John Raleigh Mott)
United States Peace Formerly Professor of History and Sociology; Honorary International President, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom.[22]
1947 Gerty Theresa Cori.jpg Gerty Theresa Cori
(shared with Carl Ferdinand Cori and Bernardo Houssay)
United States Physiology or Medicine "for their discovery of the course of the catalytic conversion of glycogen"[23]
1963 Maria Goeppert-Mayer.jpg Maria Goeppert-Mayer
(shared with J. Hans D. Jensen and Eugene Wigner)
United States Physics "for their discoveries concerning nuclear shell structure"[24]
1964 Dorothy Hodgkin Nobel.jpg Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin United Kingdom Chemistry "for her determinations by X-ray techniques of the structures of important biochemical substances"[25]
1966 Nelly Sachs 1966.jpg Nelly Sachs
(shared with Samuel Agnon)
Sweden and Germany Literature "for her outstanding lyrical and dramatic writing, which interprets Israel's destiny with touching strength"[26]
1976 Betty Williams 1996 (cropped).jpg Betty Williams United Kingdom Peace "for the courageous efforts in founding a movement to put an end to the violent conflict in Northern Ireland."[27]
Mairead Corrigan Gaza (cropped).jpg Mairead Maguire
1977 Rosalyn Yalow - portrait.jpg Rosalyn Sussman Yalow
(shared with Roger Guillemin and Andrew Schally)
United States Physiology or Medicine "for the development of radioimmunoassays of peptide hormones"[28]
1979 MotherTeresa 090.jpg Mother Teresa India and
Peace "for her work for bringing help to suffering humanity."[29]
1982 ARB-Alva-Myrdal (cropped).jpg Alva Myrdal
(shared with Alfonso García Robles)
Sweden Peace "for their work for disarmament and nuclear and weapon-free zones."[30]
1983 Barbara McClintock (1902-1992) shown in her laboratory in 1947 (cropped).jpg Barbara McClintock United States Physiology or Medicine "for her discovery of mobile genetic elements"[31]
1986 Rita Levi Montalcini.jpg Rita Levi-Montalcini
(shared with Stanley Cohen)
Italy and
United States
Physiology or Medicine "for their discoveries of growth factors"[32]
1988 Nci-vol-8236-300 Gertrude Elion.jpg Gertrude B. Elion
(shared with James W. Black and George H. Hitchings)
United States Physiology or Medicine "for their discoveries of important principles for drug treatment"[33]
1991 Nadine Gordimer 01.JPG Nadine Gordimer South Africa Literature "who through her magnificent epic writing has - in the words of Alfred Nobel - been of very great benefit to humanity"[34]
Remise du Prix Sakharov à Aung San Suu Kyi Strasbourg 22 octobre 2013-18.jpg Aung San Suu Kyi Burma Peace "for her non-violent struggle for democracy and human rights"[35]
1992 Rigoberta Menchu 2009 cropped 2.jpg Rigoberta Menchú Guatemala Peace "in recognition of her work for social justice and ethno-cultural reconciliation based on respect for the rights of indigenous peoples"[36]
1993 Toni Morrison 2008-2 (cropped).jpg Toni Morrison United States Literature "who in novels characterized by visionary force and poetic import, gives life to an essential aspect of American reality"[37]
1995 Christiane Nüsslein-Volhard mg 4383 (cropped).jpg Christiane Nüsslein-Volhard
(shared with Edward B. Lewis and Eric F. Wieschaus)
Germany Physiology or Medicine "for their discoveries concerning the genetic control of early embryonic development"[38]
1996 Szymborska 2011 (1) (cropped).jpg Wisława Szymborska Poland Literature "for poetry that with ironic precision allows the historical and biological context to come to light in fragments of human reality"[39]
1997 JodyWilliamsMay2010.jpg Jody Williams
(shared with the International Campaign to Ban Landmines)
United States Peace "for their work for the banning and clearing of anti-personnel mines"[40]
2003 Shirin-Ebadi-Amsterdam-2011-Photo-by-Persian-Dutch-Network (cropped).jpg Shirin Ebadi Iran Peace "for her efforts for democracy and human rights. She has focused especially on the struggle for the rights of women and children"[41]
2004 Elfriede jelinek 2004 small.jpg Elfriede Jelinek Austria Literature "for her musical flow of voices and counter-voices in novels and plays that with extraordinary linguistic zeal reveal the absurdity of society's clichés and their subjugating power"[42]
Wangari Matthai 2001 (cropped).jpg Wangari Maathai Kenya Peace "for her contribution to sustainable development, democracy and peace"[43]
LindaBuck cropped 1.jpg Linda B. Buck
(shared with Richard Axel)
United States Physiology or Medicine "for their discoveries of odorant receptors and the organization of the olfactory system"[44]
2007 Doris lessing 20060312 (square).jpg Doris Lessing United Kingdom Literature "that epicist of the female experience, who with scepticism, fire and visionary power has subjected a divided civilisation to scrutiny"[45]
2008 Françoise Barré-Sinoussi-press conference Dec 06th, 2008-1.jpg Françoise Barré-Sinoussi
(shared with Harald zur Hausen and Luc Montagnier)
France Physiology or Medicine "for their discovery of HIV, human immunodeficiency virus"[46]
2009 Elizabeth Blackburn CHF Heritage Day 2012 Rush 001 (cropped).JPG Elizabeth Blackburn
(shared with Jack W. Szostak)
Australia and United States Physiology or Medicine "for the discovery of how chromosomes are protected by telomeres and the enzyme telomerase"[47]
GREIDER Carol 2014 - Less vignetting.jpg Carol W. Greider
(shared with Jack W. Szostak)
United States
Ada E. Yonath.jpg Ada E. Yonath
(shared with Venkatraman Ramakrishnan and Thomas A. Steitz)
Israel Chemistry "for studies of the structure and function of the ribosome"[48]
Müller, Herta.IMG 9379 cropped.JPG Herta Müller Germany and Romania Literature "who, with the concentration of poetry and the frankness of prose, depicts the landscape of the dispossessed"[49]
Nobel Prize 2009-Press Conference KVA-30.jpg Elinor Ostrom
(shared with Oliver E. Williamson)
United States Economics "for her analysis of economic governance, especially the commons"[50]
2011 Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, April 2010.jpg Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Liberia Peace "For their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women's rights to full participation in peace-building work"[51]
Leymah-gbowee-at-emu-press-conference (cropped).jpg Leymah Gbowee
Tawakkul Karman (Munich Security Conference 2012).jpg Tawakkol Karman Yemen


Alice Munro Canada Literature "master of the contemporary short story"[52]

May-Britt Moser 2014.jpg

May-Britt Moser
(shared with Edvard Moser and John O'Keefe)
Norway Physiology or Medicine "for their discoveries of cells that constitute a positioning system in the brain"[53]
Malala Yousafzai at Girl Summit 2014.jpg Malala Yousafzai
(shared with Kailash Satyarthi)
Pakistan Peace "for their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education".[54]
2015 Tu Youyou 5012-1-2015.jpg Tu Youyou
(shared with William C. Campbell and Satoshi Ōmura)
China Physiology or Medicine "for her discoveries concerning a novel therapy against Malaria (artemisinin)"[55]
Swetlana Alexandrowna Alexijewitsch.jpg Svetlana Alexievich Belarus Literature "for her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time"[56]
2018 Donna Strickland - 2017 (cropped).jpg Donna Strickland
(shared with Gérard Mourou and Arthur Ashkin)
Canada Physics "for their method of generating high-intensity, ultra-short optical pulses"[57]
Frances Arnold 2012.png Frances Arnold
(shared with Gregory Winter and George Smith)
United States Chemistry "for the directed evolution of enzymes"[58]
Nadia Murad in Washington - 2018 (42733243785) (cropped).jpg Nadia Murad
(shared with Denis Mukwege)
Iraq Peace "for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict"[59]
Olga Tokarczuk (2018).jpg Olga Tokarczuk Poland Literature "for a narrative imagination that with encyclopedic passion represents the crossing of boundaries as a form of life"[60]

Esther Duflo - Pop!Tech 2009 - 001 (cropped (2)).jpg

Esther Duflo
(shared with Abhijit Banerjee and Michael Kremer)
France and United States Economics "for their experimental approach to alleviating global poverty"[61]
2020 Andrea M. Ghez
(shared with Reinhard Genzel and Roger Penrose)
United States Physics "for the discovery of a supermassive compact object at the centre of our galaxy"[62]
Emmanuelle Charpentier.jpg Emmanuelle Charpentier
(shared with Jennifer Doudna)
France Chemistry "for the development of a method for genome editing"[63]
Professor Jennifer Doudna ForMemRS (cropped).jpg Jennifer Doudna
(shared with Emmanuelle Charpentier)
United States Chemistry "for the development of a method for genome editing"[63]
Louise Glück circa 1977 (cropped).jpg Louise Glück United States Literature "for her unmistakable poetic voice that with austere beauty makes individual existence universal"[64]

Maria Ressa.jpg

Maria Ressa
(shared with Dmitry Andreyevich Muratov)
Philippines Peace "for their effort to safeguard freedom of expression, which is a precondition for democracy and lasting peace[65]

See also[edit]


  • "Women Nobel Laureates". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2009-10-13.
  1. ^ Vereckey, Betsy (March 15, 2022). "The 58 women who have won the Nobel Prize". The Telegraph. Retrieved 22 May 2022.
  2. ^ "100 Years Ago: Marie Curie Wins 2nd Nobel Prize". Scientific American. October 28, 2011. Archived from the original on 7 May 2021. Retrieved 30 November 2021.
  3. ^ Marie Curie won the nobel prize twice, once in physics and once in chemistry[2]
  4. ^ "Nobel Prize facts". NobelPrize.org. Retrieved 2018-10-17.
  5. ^ "All Nobel Peace Prizes". NobelPrize.org. Retrieved 2020-10-01.
  6. ^ "All Nobel Prizes in Literature". NobelPrize.org. Retrieved 2020-10-01.
  7. ^ "All Nobel Prizes in Physiology or Medicine". NobelPrize.org. Retrieved 2020-10-06.
  8. ^ "All Nobel Prizes in Chemistry". NobelPrize.org. Retrieved 2020-10-07.
  9. ^ "All Nobel Prizes in Physics". NobelPrize.org. Retrieved 2020-10-06.
  10. ^ "All Prizes in Economic Sciences". NobelPrize.org. Retrieved 2020-10-01.
  11. ^ a b "Nobel Laureates Facts - Women". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2017-10-07.
  12. ^ a b "Nobel Prize in Physics 1903". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  13. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 1905". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  14. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 1909". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  15. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1911". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  16. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 1926". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  17. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 1928". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  18. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 1931". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  19. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1935". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  20. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 1938". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  21. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 1945". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  22. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 1946". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  23. ^ "Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1947". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  24. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physics 1963". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  25. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1964". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  26. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 1966". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  27. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 1976". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  28. ^ "Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1977". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  29. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 1979". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  30. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 1982". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  31. ^ "Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1983". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  32. ^ "Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1986". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  33. ^ "Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1988". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  34. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 1991". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  35. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 1991". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  36. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 1992". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  37. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 1993". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  38. ^ "Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1995". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  39. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 1996". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  40. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 1997". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2012-09-09.
  41. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 2003". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  42. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 2004". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  43. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize 2004". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  44. ^ "Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2004". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  45. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 2007". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  46. ^ "Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2008". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  47. ^ "Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2009". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2009-10-05.
  48. ^ "Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2009". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2009-10-07.
  49. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 2009". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2009-10-08.
  50. ^ "Economics 2009". Nobel Foundation. 2009-10-12. Retrieved 2009-10-12.
  51. ^ "The Nobel Peace Prize 2011". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2011-10-07.
  52. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Literature 2013" (PDF). Nobel Foundation. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-10-12. Retrieved 2013-10-10.
  53. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2014". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2014-10-07.
  54. ^ "The Nobel Peace Prize 2014" (PDF). Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2014-10-10.[permanent dead link]
  55. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2015" (PDF). Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2015-10-05.
  56. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 2015". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  57. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physics 2018". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 13 October 2018.
  58. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physics 2018". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 13 October 2018.
  59. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physics 2018". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 13 October 2018.
  60. ^ "Nobel Prize in Literature 2018". Nobel Foundation. Retrieved 2019-10-10.
  61. ^ Nobel Prize 2019 nobelprize.org
  62. ^ Nobel Prize 2020 nobelprize.org
  63. ^ a b nobelprize.org
  64. ^ "Summary of the 2020 Nobel Prize in Literature".
  65. ^ Nobel Prize 2021 nobelprize.org

Further reading[edit]