** UPDATE: 25 March 2013 - Due to the upcoming appointment of a new High Commissioner when the mandate of Knut Vollebaek expires later this year, the next Max van der Stoel Award will be presented in 2014
The Max van der Stoel Award was established in 2001 by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. The Award honours Max van der Stoel, a prominent Dutch statesman who was the first OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities, while also supporting the work of the HCNM.
The Max van der Stoel Award, a prize of €50,000, is presented every two years to a person, group or an institution for extraordinary and outstanding achievements in improving the position of national minorities in the OSCE participating States.
The office of the HCNM manages the selection process. Nominations are put forward by the OSCE missions and institutions, delegations of the OSCE participating States and the OSCE HCNM. After drawing up a shortlist of candidates, a specially composed international jury, chaired by the High Commissioner, chooses the winner of the Award.
Since its establishment, five organizations have received the Max van der Stoel Award: the Latvian Centre for Human Rights and Ethnic Studies (2003); the “Memorial” International Historial Enlightenment, Human Rights and Humanitarian Society (2005); the European Roma Rights Centre (2007); the Integration and Development Centre for Information and Research from Crimea, Ukraine (2009); and the Nansen Dialogue Centre Skopje (2011).
2011 – The Nansen Dialogue Centre Skopje (NDC Skopje)
The NDC Skopje, established in 2000, is part of the Nansen Dialogue Network, which supports intercultural and interethnic dialogue with the aim of preventing conflict, fostering reconciliation and building peace. In particular, it has taken up the challenging task of bringing together students, parents and teachers in an area that has been affected by the 2001 conflict and is characterized by great ethnic divisions.