Erich Maria Remarque, author of the celebrated novel "All Quiet on the Western Front" was born in Osnabrueck in 1898. Some of his experiences during World War I had a great influence on the writing of his novel: "My topic is 20th century man and the issue of humanity". Nations, systems or religions mattered little to Remarque in comparison with the freedom and dignity of the individual. Since 1991, the city of Osnabrueck has awarded the "Erich Maria Remarque Peace Prize" every two years. This prize, presented in memory of the author, recognizes literary, journalistic or scientific works dealing with the topics of "inner and outer peace" (e.g. war and peace, disarmament, détente, human rights and personal liberty rights, exile, expulsion and asylum). The Erich Maria Remarque Peace Prize carries an endowment of 25 000 euros, more than any other prize awarded by the city of Osnabrueck.
The Erich Maria Remarque Peace Prize, as provided for by its name giver, is awarded for literature and journalistic or scientific work dealing with subjects of peace in a specific country or on an international level and for exemplary commitment to peace, humanity and freedom of man against oppression.
Under the chairmanship of Prof. Dr. Claus Rollinger, President of the University of Osnabrück, the jury includes Prof. Heinz Ludwig Arnold († November 2011), Prof. Dr. Hans Mommsen, Prof. Dr. Heribert Prantl, Jutta Sauer (author), Prof. Dr. Rita Süßmuth, Dr. Hubert Winkels as well as Prof. Dr. Tilman Westphalen as representative of the Erich-Maria-Remarque-Gesellschaft, and Dr. Thomas Schneider as head of the Erich Maria Remarque Peace Centre, as well as the representatives of the City of Osnabrück, Lord Mayor Boris Pistorius and the city’s press officer, Dr. Sven Jürgensen.