Baltic Assembly Prize for Literature, the Arts and Science

The idea on establishment of the Baltic Assembly Prize was conceived in 1992. The establishment of the Baltic Prize was inspired by the tradition of the Nordic Council Prizes.

On 31 October 1993 in Tallinn, Resolution on the Establishment of the Baltic Assembly Prizes in Culture, Arts and Science was adopted. Main aim of establishment of the Prizes was to "promote further cooperation among the three nations, provide new opportunities for exchanging cultural values and stimulate better understanding of the history and cultural heritage of the countries".

The aim of the Prize is to support outstanding achievements in literature, the arts and science; demonstrate the common interests of the countries in this region in upholding of their national identity and self-esteem; create an opportunity to learn about the achievements of the neighbouring countries; maintain a continuous interest among the people in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania about developments in the Baltic States; strengthen cooperation among the Baltic States in the fields of literature, the arts and science; encourage more and more people to become interested in the intellectual values and languages of the Baltic nations; and raise the level of literature, the arts and science in the Baltic States. 

The Baltic Assembly Prize for Literature shall be awarded annually to an author for a novel, a play, a collection of poems, short stories or essays, or any similar written composition in Estonian, Latvian or Lithuanian. The work must have been published for the first time within the past five years.

The Baltic Assembly Prize for the Arts shall be awarded annually either to an author or to a performer for a work of art or a series of works presented (performed before an audience) within the past three years in fine arts, applied arts, in music, architecture, theatre or cinema. It also may be awarded to a director, soloist, actor, ballet artist or a group of artists for outstanding artistic achievement accomplished within the past three years.

The Baltic Assembly Prize for Science shall be awarded annually to an author for outstanding research work or series of works in the humanities, social or natural sciences, which is of international importance, has a considerable impact on the Baltic region and has been published within the past five years.

National and Joint Juries of the Baltic Assembly Prizes

Nominees for the Baltic Assembly Prizes from Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania shall be assessed by National Juries. The National Jury shall consist of at least nine people. The members of the National Jury shall be outstanding specialists in the fields of literature, the arts and science and shall be nominated by creative unions, academies of science, councils of science, or other institutions and organisations working in the field of literature, the arts and science. Decisions on the nomination of the works for the Joint Jury shall be made with an absolute majority.

The Joint Jury of the Baltic Assembly Prize shall consist of nine people. The works nominated for the Prizes in literature, the arts or science shall be assessed by the respective experts. Each country shall delegate three persons to the Joint Jury and determine the procedure for their selection. The members of the Joint Jury shall be outstanding specialists in the fields of literature, the arts and science. The Joint Jury shall make its decisions and the reasoning thereof known to the public.

Nominating the Work and Awarding the Prizes

Portfolio and works with all the necessary information (the curriculum vitae of a nominee, reviews, at least two letters of recommendation and other relevant materials) shall be submitted to the relevant National Jury in accordance with the regulations of the competition prior to 1 June.

The relevant National Jury shall assess submitted works and nominate the best work from the fields of literature, the arts and science for international competition judged by the Joint Jury.

The Joint Jury shall convene for the meeting not later than one month prior to the annual Session of the Baltic Assembly.

The same person (group of persons) may not receive the Prize more than once.

The Prize consists of a monetary prize, a certificate and a statuette, which are awarded annually during the Session of the Baltic Assembly. Latest amendments to the Regulations on the Baltic Assembly Prizes for Literature, the Arts and Science were adopted on 29 November 2019 in Riga, Latvia.  

BA Prizes in 2020 were awarded in:

IN LITERATURE: Birutė Jonuškaitė, novelist, poet and essayist, nominated for her novel cycle "Maranta" and "Maestro", which belong with the long, branched-out texts that weave numerous storylines and created detailed characters, which possess the versatility and depth of the classic canon, and which raise the language to the appropriate heights also for the hefty book of conversations "Laikas ir likimai" ("Time and Destiny").

IN THE ARTS: Kristīne Briede and Audrius Stonys, directors, nominated for meditative documentary essay "Bridges of Time" (2018), which was co-produced by Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian studios and portrays the less-remembered generation of cinema poets of the Baltic New Wave.

IN SCIENCE: Roberts Eglītis, Member of the Latvian Academy of Science, nominated for work cycle: "Theoretical predictions of new materials for energy storage and harvesting".


BA Prizes in 2019 were awarded in: 

IN LITERATURE: Leelo Tungal (Estonia), writer, nominated for her autobiographic trilogy "Comrade Kid" (Tänapäev, 2018), with a special emphasis on the last book of the series "A Woman’s Touch" (Tänapäev, 2018), where Stalin’s era is depicted through the eyes of a child

IN THE ARTS: Normunds Šnē (Latvia), conductor, nominated for the performance at the concert in honour of 100-year anniversary of the Baltic states in the prominent Baltic Sea Festival in Stockholm's Berwaldhallenon August 28, 2018, with Sinfonietta Rīga and Tallinn Chamber Orchestra

IN SCIENCE: Jūras Banys (Lithuania), nominated for his outstanding contribution to research and innovations in ferroelectricity and phase transition as well as his devout leadership and professional scientific achievements

© Photo by the Chancellary of Parliament of the Republic of Latvia (Author: Ieva Ābele) 


BA Prizes in 2018 were awarded in:

LITERATURE: Ms Gundega Repše, Latvia: for the idea and concept of the historical novel series “Us. Latvia. XX century”, the curating of the publication of 13 novels in the series, as well as for the novel “Bogene” as one of the novels in the series

THE ARTS: Ms Jurgita Dronina, Lithuania: for her impressive performances on the greatest stages of the world

SCIENCE: Dr Els Heinsalu, Estonia: for her significant contribution in the theory of complex systems and stochastic processes 

© Photo by Chancellary of Seimas (Author: Dž. G. Barysaitė)


BA Prizes in 2017 were awarded in:

LITERATURE: Mr Vladas Braziūnas, Lithuania:  for his poetic discoveries made while delving into the Baltic worldview and the linguistic heritage of the Lithuanian, Latvian and other languages and as well as for his translations from Latvian and other languages and outstanding international projects on modern poetry

THE ARTS: Ms Laima Slava, Latvia:  for the excellent professional contribution to the theory development of the art science, as well as for the outstanding achievement in the book publishing sector, especially in publishing of art books, which significantly have enriched the current cultural landscape and furthermore foster the international recognition of Latvian culture

SCIENCE: Prof. Andres Metspalu, Estonia:  for his innovative, diverse and lasting contribution to gene technology and molecular diagnostic

© Photo by Administration of Saeima (Author: Ernersts Dinka) 



Statuettes of the Baltic Assembly Prize

© Photo by Administration of Saeima (Author: Ernersts Dinka)