The First-Ever Singapore Prize

A total of close to S$2.3 million (US$1.7 million) was awarded to 121 Asian and SEA Games medallists at a special awards ceremony held at Timbre+ One-North on Wednesday (Nov 29). Sprint queen Shanti Pereira walked away with the biggest haul, receiving S$315,000 for her two gold and silver medals in the 100m and 200m events at the Hangzhou Asian Games. The event also saw Singapore’s newest Olympian — gymnast Yvonne Lim — win S$200,000 for finishing eighth in the vault and pommel horse at the Rio Olympics, making her the country’s most successful female athlete to date.

In addition to the top winners, S$100,000 was awarded to 20 finalists from different categories in the SINGAPEX-UNICEF Innovation Prize for Youth, which recognises young people with outstanding artistic skills and innovative ideas that can contribute towards building a better future for all. The top six in each category – Accion Andina, GRST, S4S Technologies, Boomitra and WildAid Marine Program — will receive funding of up to $100,000 each, while the rest of the finalists will receive between $50,000 and $80,000 each.

Professor Wang said that Prof Miksic’s book “deserved to be the winner because it laid the foundation for a fundamental reinterpretation of our history.” He added that bits of historical information, such as references from Chinese traders, had long raised questions about Singapore’s existence before Sir Stamford Raffles even set foot here in 1819.

The National University of Singapore’s Department of History announced the first-ever Singapore History Prize for a work that has had a lasting impact on Singaporeans’ understanding of the nation’s past. Its inaugural award was given to a book on the city’s ancient artefacts by archaeologist John Miksic. The 491-page tome, entitled Singapore and the Silk Road of the Sea, 1300-1800, reveals how a trading port existed in the city’s early years.

During his visit, the heir to the British throne was cheered by fans at the Jewel Changi Airport who waved homemade signs and clutched photos of him and his late mother Princess Diana. The prince stood on an upper floor for a stunning view of the 40m-high Rain Vortex, the world’s largest indoor waterfall that was lit green to mark his arrival. He was also shown a tree planted in his honour at the indoor garden at the foot of the waterfall.

The prince was in town for the third annual Earthshot Prize ceremony, which was hosted for the first time in Asia on Tuesday (Nov 13). It saw 15 finalists from a wide range of areas, from solar-powered dryers to combat food waste to making electric car batteries more energy-efficient, being honoured. Guests, including celebrities such as actress Cate Blanchett and actors Donnie Yen and Lana Condor, Australian wildlife conservationist Robert Irwin and entrepreneur Claire Chiang, watched the five winners being awarded. The prince praised the innovations, saying that they showed “hope remains” despite the daunting effects of climate change. This article was originally published on Nov 23, 2021, by the United Nations Environment Programme.