An annual book prize launched this week has become the richest ever for a Singapore award. It is the Dr Alan HJ Chan Spirit of Singapore Book Prize, sponsored by the Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS). It aims to promote books that champion mindsets and values that have shaped Singapore’s society. These include equality, religious harmony, meritocracy and pragmatism. It also encourages writers to explore the diverse cultural and national identities in Singapore.
The prize comes with GBP 1 million, or about SGD 1.7 million, in funding. It is intended to act as a propeller for the winners, helping them to advance their ideas and innovations at a larger scale. The five winners will be able to work with world leaders and businesses to pursue new opportunities. The winner with the most impact will receive a bonus prize of GBP 100,000.
This year’s event is expected to be the largest and most significant yet, as it will feature performances by internationally renowned artists and musicians. The previous editions have seen the likes of Ed Sheeran, Coldplay and Billie Eilish perform. In addition, a host of other activities will be taking place throughout the week to celebrate the winners and their work.
Previously, the Singapore Prize awarded an amount of $40,000 to a team or individual that demonstrated excellence in business, science or technology, as well as social or environmental impact. The winning team is given an opportunity to showcase their project at the World Economic Forum on ASEAN in Singapore next month.
In addition to the main prize, there will be three other categories of awards. The winners of these awards will be announced at the Singapore Prize Gala Dinner on November 7. The first category, the Asia Young Innovator Award, recognises promising young innovators from around the region. The winners will be selected by an international jury.
The second category, the Global Impact Award, will be presented to the winner with the greatest potential for social impact in the wider region. The judges will evaluate the potential impact of the project by measuring its social and economic impact as well as its sustainability and scalability. The third category, the Young Entrepreneur Award, recognises individuals who have shown leadership and innovation in their businesses. The judges will evaluate the potential for success of the nominees by considering their past accomplishments, current achievements and future ambitions.