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The awards are divided into several categories. All prizes are awarded to journalists, broadcasters, or citizen journalists, whose work is of such outstanding quality that it contributes to better understanding, and, either directly in the case of commentators or indirectly in the case of news journalists who foster better understanding of key issues, encourages and promotes rapprochement.

The Peace through Media prizes are for senior journalists who have contributed to better understanding throughout their careers.

The Lifetime Achievement award is awarded to journalists who have produced thoughtful, insightful and accurate work throughout a long and distinguished career.

The Cutting Edge prizes are for journalists recognised for their high standards of analysis and reporting.

The Breakaway prize is for young journalists who have already begun to make an impact at the beginning of their careers.

The New Media prize, also known as the bloggers award is a prize given to those who have fostered better understanding and peace through new media, including blogs and social media.

The Photography and Visual Media prize is awarded photographers and/or cartoonists who have produced consistently excellent work in some of the world's most war-torn regions.

In addition, certain persons are honoured with special awards every year.

The Outstanding Contribution to Peace award is a special prize awarded to those who have tirelessly and creatively worked for the cause of peace and understanding in trouble regions of the world.

The Outstanding Achievement award is a special prize awarded to journalists and/or figures for their immeasurable impact and contribution to the media and broadcasting.