The Sydney Peace Prize is awarded by the Sydney Peace Foundation,
a not-for-profit organisation associated with the University of Sydney. The prize promotes peace with justice and the practice of nonviolence. It aims to encourage public interest and discussion about issues of peace, social justice, human rights, and non-violent conflict resolution.
The City of Sydney is a major supporter of the Sydney Peace Prize. This involves a significant financial contribution along with other in-kind support in order to foster peace with justice.
Over three months each year, the Sydney Peace Prize jury – comprising seven individuals who represent corporate, media, academic and community sector interests – assesses the merits of the nominees' efforts to promote peace with justice. It is awarded to an organisation or individual:
who has made significant contributions to global peace including improvements in personal security and steps towards eradicating poverty, and other forms of structural violence
whose role and responsibilities enable the recipient to use the prize to further the cause of peace with justice
whose work illustrates the philosophy and principles of non-violence
The jury has been prepared to make some controversial choices. Sydney Peace Foundation Founder, Emeritus Professor Stuart Rees, said, "The initiators of the Sydney Peace Prize aimed to influence public interest in peace with justice, an ideal which is often perceived as controversial. The choice of a non-controversial candidate for a peace prize would be a safe option but unlikely to prompt debate or to increase understanding. Consensus usually encourages compliance, often anaesthetises and seldom informs."
^"2013 Dr Cynthia Maung". Sydney Peace Foundation. 17 August 2013. Retrieved 6 February 2014. for her dedication to multi-ethnic democracy, human rights and the dignity of the poor and dispossessed, and for establishing health services for victims of conflict.
^"2015 George Gittoes AM". Sydney Peace Foundation. 10 November 2015. Retrieved 11 May 2016. for exposing injustice for over 45 years as a humanist artist, activist and filmmaker, for his courage to witness and confront violence in the war zones of the world, for enlisting the arts to subdue aggression and for enlivening the creative spirit to promote tolerance, respect and peace with justice.