What is the Kyoto Prize?
Using his own funds, Inamori established the Inamori Foundation in 1984, based on his lifelong belief that “people have no higher calling than to strive for the greater good of humankind and society.” In keeping with this conviction, the foundation recognizes persons who have made outstanding contributions to the progress of science, the advancement of civilization, and the enrichment and elevation of the human spirit. It also supports excellent research and contributes to social enlightenment.
One year later, in 1985, the Kyoto Prize was inaugurated as the primary activity of the Inamori Foundation. The Kyoto Prize is an annual, international award to honor those who have made significant contributions in one of three categories: Advanced Technology, Basic Sciences, or Arts and Philosophy. The awards ceremony is held in Kyoto every year on November 10, a date that generally coincides with peak autumn foliage, providing a lavish backdrop for the festivities. During the week of the Kyoto Prize Presentation Ceremony, a variety of events are held, such as commemorative lectures, workshops and special classes at local high schools.
The most significant aspect of the Kyoto Prize is to recognize those who have contributed to progress, not only in the sciences, but also in the exploration of human spirituality, through the Arts and Philosophy category. The Kyoto Prize seeks to recognize not just discovery and invention, but also extraordinary contributions to humankind and society over an extended period, something which requires exceptional dedication.
Additionally, the Kyoto Prize Symposium is held each year in San Diego at the University of San Diego; San Diego State University; University of California, San Diego; and Point Loma Nazarene University.