Every year since 1901 the Nobel Prize has been awarded by a committee in Norway for outstanding achievements in physics, chemistry, medicine, literature and peace. Henry Dunant, the founder of the Red Cross, shared the first Peace Prize with Frédéric Passy, a renowned pacifist.
The Peace Prize tends to be the most controversial of all the Nobel Prizes. It originally recognised peace achievements, but now has broadened its scope to encourage work in progress. This created criticism of President Obama's win in 2009, as he had been in office for less than a year at the time.