The Singapore Prize is awarded biennially for outstanding published works written in English, Chinese or Malay languages and published since 2004. As Singapore’s second-highest literary award after Epigram Books Fiction Prize, its winner receives both cash prize of $3,000 and an engraved trophy; shortlisted authors receive book vouchers worth $50 as part of their prizes. This year saw record entries with 235 submissions; double what had been received previously – fiction was selected more often than non-fiction works for nomination.
In 2014, to commemorate Singapore’s 50th anniversary of independence and promote research into Singapore history, the inaugural Singapore Prize was initiated. Administered by the Department of History at National University of Singapore (NUS), this prize recognizes an exceptional publication that has made a significant impactful contribution in our understanding of Singapore history and continues to shape how we see ourselves today. To qualify for consideration for this prize, book-length written or translated works related to Singapore history must have been published between 1 June 2021 and 31 May 2024 and published between 1 June 2024 and 31 May 2024.
Prof Miksic began working in archaeology in 1984, but he did not expect his book to win an award until its success surprised him. He wrote it as an expression of thanks to more than 1,000 individuals who assisted with excavations, giving them “some sense of their significance”. Since winning, Prof Miksic will now collaborate with NUS Press in creating an online database on ancient artefacts discovered here in Singapore.
Kishore Mahbubani, NUS’ senior advisor for university and global relations, told reporters of plans to broaden the scope of future prizes to encompass fictional works on different mediums – specifically using 12 Years a Slave as an example of why some historical stories work better when told through fiction than through factual accounts.
On Tuesday evening at Mediacorp Campus in Singapore, the 2023 Earthshot Prize winners were revealed. Celebrities including Cate Blanchett, Hannah Waddingham from Ted Lasso and Sterling K Brown joined in welcoming a new generation of entrepreneurs and business leaders who offer solutions for our planet’s most pressing problems. Winners were revealed across five categories.