The SG Prize and NUS Earthshot Prizes

singapore prize

SG Prize is a biennial book award presented to authors for outstanding published works in Chinese, English and Malay. Its winner receives both a cash prize and an engraved trophy. The competition is a joint project of Epigram Books and the National Book Development Council of Singapore. It is considered to be the second highest literary prize in Singapore after the Epigram Books Fiction Prize.

The winners of the SG Prize are announced at the closing ceremony of the Singapore International Literary Festival. Previous winners include poet Marylyn Tan, historian Wang Gungwu and Malaysian-language writer Sithuraj Ponraj. Besides the main award, there are two other special categories. The Readers’ Favourite, voted online by the public, was introduced in 2020, while the Best Debut category was established last year.

The NUS History Prize, launched in 2014, is the first prize devoted to Singapore’s history. Administered by the NUS Department of History, it aims to broaden definitions of what constitutes history by inviting writings that cover a wide range of perspectives and themes on Singapore’s past from both new and established writers.

At the glitzy awards ceremony held at the state-owned MediaCorp Theatre on Tuesday, Prince William, who launched the Earthshot prizes in 2020, said that the solutions demonstrated by the 15 finalists proved “hope does remain” as the world grapples with climate change. Celebrities including Oscar winner Cate Blanchett and actors Donnie Yen, Lana Condor and Nomzano Mbatha attended the event, which was broadcast live across the globe. Musicians Bastille and One Republic also performed.

The finalists were selected by a panel of judges, led by Singaporean professor and former chairman of the judging panel for the Singapore Literature Prize, Choo Zhiyu. The winning entries were chosen from a pool of 192 submissions, a tenfold increase in the number of titles submitted compared to the inaugural edition of the prize. The shortlisted books, ranging from poetry to history and fiction to nonfiction, were drawn from five categories: nature protection, clean air, ocean revival, waste elimination and climate change.

The awardees of the science and technology prize are scientists who have contributed to a significant levelling-up in the nation’s research capabilities or international stature, with achievements that are recognised by fellow S&T practitioners as being important and impactful. They need not have been commercialised or turned into products, but should show clear potential for such applications in the future.