Celebrity Advocates in Brazil

UNESCO recognizes the merit of Brazilians for their originality and exemplary public attitudes that has conquered the admiration of all State Members of the Organization.  Among the UNESCO Celebrity Advocates are the following Brazilians:

Milú Villela, Oskar Metsavaht, Nizan Guanaes, Vik Muniz, Pelé, Jackie Silva, and Gilberto Gil,  besides their duties with their carriers, they have permanent social and collective sensibility. Therefore, they have publicaly combated unjust acts and discrimination and have significantly contributed to social integration.

Lily Marinho is one of the former honorary goodwill ambassadors.

Brazilian Winners of UNESCO International Prizes

Brazil is also present in UNESCO through Brazilian personalities and institutions that have been recognized and awarded internationally.

(Classification by theme and year)


1968 - Mohammad Reza Pahlavi Prize - Basic Education Movement (PDF, 157 Kb)

1975 - Mohammad Reza Pahlavi Prize - Paulo Freire (PDF, 444 Kb)

1982 - International Reading Association Literacy Prize - Barreirinho Project of Movimento de Alfabetização MOBRAL Literacy Movement in the State of Minas Gerais (Bronze Medal and Diploma) (PDF, 231 Kb)

1986 - UNESCO Prize for Peace Education - Paulo Freire

1992 - King Sejong Literacy Prize - Instituto de Educação Rural para o Amazonas (Bronze Medal and Diploma) (PDF, 97 Kb)

1994 - International Reading Association Literacy Prize – Basic Education Movement (MEB) (Bronze Medal and Diploma) (PDF, 97 Kb)

2001 - Noma Literacy Prize - Instituto Brasileiro de Estudos e Apoio Comunitário (IBEAC)

2004 - King Sejong Literacy Prize- Alfabetização Solidária (AlfaSol) (PDF, 4.7 Mb)

2008 - International Reading Association Literacy Prize - Programme “Alfabetizando com Saúde” - Curitiba City Council.

Natural Sciences

1974 - Kalinga Prize for the Popularization of Science - José Reis

1982 - Kalinga Prize for the Popularization of Science - Oswaldo Frota-Pessoa

1985 - Carlos J. Finlay Prize for Meritorious Work in Microbiology - Victor and Ruth Nussenzweig – microbiology (PDF, 97 Kb)

1987 - Carlos J. Finlay Prize for Meritorious Work in Microbiology - Hélio Gelli Pereira – contagious diseases (PDF, 97 Kb)

1989 - UNESCO Science Prize - Johanna Dobereiner - Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuária (EMBRAPA) – biologic nitrogen (PDF, 97 Kb)

1998 - Kalinga Prize for the Popularization of Science - Ennio Candotti

2000 - Kalinga Prize for the Popularization of Science - Ernst Hamburger

2005 - Kalinga Prize for the Popularization of Science - Jeter Jorge Bertoletti

2005 – Trieste Science Prize - Sérgio Henrique Ferreira - Biology – analgesic effects of the Jararaca snake poison

2013 - L’Oréal-UNESCO Awards for Women in Science - Márcia Barbosa - For discovering one of the peculiarities of water 

2015 - L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Awards - Thaisa Storchi Bergmann - Physics and Astronomy

2015 - UNESCO-Equatorial Guinea International Prize for Research in the Life Sciences - Manoel Barral-Netto - science and control tools in the area of transmissible diseases and the neglected diseases of poverty

Social and Human Sciences

2008 -  Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize - Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva

1996-1997 - UNESCO Cities for Peace Prize - Lidice da Mata - Salvador, Bahia


2007 - UNESCO Visual Arts and Digital Arts Award – Digital Arts Category - Coletivo Madeirista Art Group – Artwork: "The Shadows Inventory".

2006 - UNESCO Visual Arts and Digital Arts Award  - Ivani Santana – Artwork:  “Man has made his difference”.

1977 - UNESCO-International Music Council Music Prize - Luis Heitor Correa de Azevedo (PDF, 97 Kb)

1993 - UNESCO Prize for the Promotion of the Arts -  Plastic Arts “Sculpture” (PDF, 97 Kb)

Additional Information

For additional information, please visit the following UNESCO web sites:

  • Honorary and Goodwill Ambassadors: outstanding group of celebrity advocates who spread the ideals of UNESCO (goodwill ambassadors, honorary ambassadors for Literacy Decade, artists for peace, champions for sport, and special envoys)
  • UNESCO Prizes: prizes to reward outstanding efforts of individuals and groups in the fields of Education, Natural Sciences, Social and Human Sciences, Culture, Communication and Information, and Peace.
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