Ramon Magsaysay Award

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Ramon Magsaysay Award
Gawad Ramon Magsaysay
Medallion with an embossed image of Ramon Magsaysayl facing right in profile.
Awarded forOutstanding contributions in Government Service, Public Service, Community Leadership, Journalism, Literature and Creative Communication Arts, Peace and International Understanding and Emergent Leadership
Presented byRamon Magsaysay Award Foundation
First awarded1958

The Ramon Magsaysay Award (Filipino: Gawad Ramon Magsaysay) is an annual award established to perpetuate former Philippine President Ramon Magsaysay's example of integrity in governance, courageous service to the people, and pragmatic idealism within a democratic society.[1][2] The prize was established in April 1957 by the trustees of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund based in New York City with the concurrence of the Philippine government.[3][4][5] It is often called the "Nobel Peace Prize of Asia".[6]


The award is named after Ramon Magsaysay, the seventh president of the Republic of the Philippines after World War II. The Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation gives the prize to Asian individuals achieving excellence in their respective fields. The awards were given in six categories, five of which were discontinued in 2009:

  • Government Service (1958–2008)
  • Public Service (1958–2008)
  • Community Leadership (1958–2008)
  • Journalism, Literature, and Creative Communication Arts (1958–2008)
  • Peace and International Understanding (1958–2008)
  • Emergent Leadership (2001– )
  • Uncategorized (2009– )


In May 1957, seven prominent Filipinos were named to the founding board of trustees of the Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation, the non-profit corporation tasked with implementing the awards program. Later on, the board of trustees diversified and included prominent Asians from all over the Asian continent and outlying islands.

The RMAF recognizes and honors individuals and organizations in Asia regardless of race, creed, sex, or nationality, who have achieved distinction in their respective fields and have helped others generously without anticipating public recognition. The awards have traditionally been given in five categories: government service; public service; community leadership; journalism, literature, and creative communication arts; and peace and international understanding.


The winners of the Ramon Magsaysay Awards come from different parts of Asia, although there are some instances where the winners came from countries outside Asia who had served, worked or accomplished something in different Asian countries. As of 2021, recipients have come from twenty-two Asian countries.


  1. ^ Clare Arthurs (2000-07-25). "Activists share 'Asian Nobel Prize'". BBC News. Retrieved 2008-02-20.[permanent dead link]
  2. ^ Ann Bernadette Corvera (2003-10-08). "'03 Ramon Magsaysay Awardee: A League of Extraordinary Men & Women". Philippine Star. Archived from the original on 2018-12-25. Retrieved 2008-02-21.
  3. ^ AsiaNews.it. "Magsaysay Awards, Asia's Nobel Prize, in the social and cultural fields". www.asianews.it. Archived from the original on 2018-06-15. Retrieved 2018-06-14.
  4. ^ Ballaran, Jhoanna. "5 persons, 1 organization honored at 2017 Ramon Magsaysay Award". Archived from the original on 2018-06-15. Retrieved 2018-06-14.
  5. ^ "'Asia's Nobel Prize': now more than ever". Archived from the original on 2018-06-15. Retrieved 2018-06-14.
  6. ^ "Mayor Akiba of Hiroshima City, President of Mayors for Peace, receives the Magsaysay Award │ Mayors for Peace". www.mayorsforpeace.org.

Further reading[edit]

  • Singh Negi, Rajender (2008-08-23). "Magsaysay Award: Asian Nobel, Not so Noble". Economic and Political Weekly. 43 (34): 14–16. ISSN 0012-9976. JSTOR 40277873.

External links[edit]