- January 30 - Adolf Hitler becomes chancellor of Germany
- May - Karl Jansky announces the detection of radio waves from the centre of the galaxy.
- Change of US presidency from Herbert Hoover (1929-1933) to Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1933-1945)
- Physics - Erwin Schrödinger, Paul Adrien Maurice Dirac
- Chemistry - not awarded
- Medicine - Thomas Hunt Morgan
- Literature - Ivan Alekseyevich Bunin
- Peace - Sir Norman Angell (Ralph Lane)