Expectations are building ahead of this week's Nobel Prizes ceremonies, with the award for physiology or medicine first up on October 3.
The much-anticipated Nobel Peace Prize, to be announced on October 7, is the subject of much debate.
Kristian Berg Harpviken of Oslo's Peace Research Institute thinks the focus this year is choosing a "deserving candidate related to the Arab Spring," the anti government revolts that began in Tunisia and Egypt and have since spread through much of the Arab world.
He floated names like Egyptian activists Israa Abdel Fattah, Tunisian blogger Lina Ben Mhenni, Afghan human rights activist Sima Samar, the Russian human rights organization Memorial, and Germany's ex-chanceller Helmut Kohl, among others, as potential candidates.
The Nobel Prize in Literature is another hotly awaited announcement (no announcement date has yet been given). Writers such as Syrian poet Adonis, Canadian Margaret Atwood, South Korea's Ko Un, and American author Philip Roth are considered to be among the many possible candidates.
The Nobel Prizes were first award in 1901 in recognition of major achievements in medicine, physics, chemistry, literature, and peace. The economics prize, not technically a Nobel Prize, dates back to 1968.
compiled from agency reports