Malala Yousafzai and the Congolese doctor who helped rape victims are among this year’s Nobel Peace Prize favorites.
The winner of the most coveted of the Nobel honors will be revealed in Oslo at 11:00 local time Friday.
This year’s record list of 259 nominees remains a secret, but bookmakers and pundits say Malala is a contender.
Gynaecologist Denis Mukwege of the Democratic Republic of Congo is also tipped but predictions are often wrong.
Chelsea Manning, the US soldier convicted of giving classified documents to WikiLeaks has also been listed as a potential nominee.
Others include Maggie Gobran, an Egyptian computer scientist who abandoned her academic career to become a Coptic Christian nun and founded the charity Stephen’s Children, and Russian former mathematics professor Svetlana Gannushinka who set up the rights group Civil Assistance.
If she wins, Malala Yousafzai, 16, will claim a gold medal, 8 million Swedish kronor ($1.25 million) and the title of youngest-ever Nobel laureate.
Malala Yousafzai emerged as a contender after continuing her work to promote better rights for girls despite being shot in the head by the Taliban in Pakistan.
The Pakistani young activist rose to prominence in 2009 after writing a blog anonymously for the BBC Urdu service about her life under Taliban rule in Pakistan’s Swat Valley.
On Thursday Malala Yousafzai was named as the winner of the EU’s Sakharov prize, a 50,000-euro ($65,000) award considered Europe’s top human rights accolade.
Bookmakers have placed Malala Yousafzai as 3/5 favourite on a list which includes long shots such as U2 singer Bono, Russian President Vladimir Putin and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
Denis Mukwege, who has been listed as a possible Nobel laureate in the past, set up a hospital and foundation to help tens of thousands of women raped by militants and soldiers in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Like Malala Yousafzai, Denis Mukwege was also targeted by assassins a year ago. He escaped injury but temporarily sought exile in Europe.
Previous Nobel peace prize laureates include anti-apartheid hero Nelson Mandela, US President Barack Obama, the Dalai Lama and Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi.
In 2012 the prize was awarded to the European Union in recognition of its contribution to peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe.