A new book prize has been launched in Singapore to recognise local fiction and non-fiction works. The inaugural Dr Alan HJ Chan Spirit of Singapore Book Prize is worth $30,000, the biggest pot ever for a book award in the city-state. It was made possible by a donation from the Confucian scholar and aims to promote writing that champions mindsets and values important to Singapore’s development. These include equality, diversity, religious harmony, meritocracy, pragmatism and an emphasis on education.
The prize is open to all citizens of the world. The winner will receive a cash prize, an invitation to the award ceremony in London, and the opportunity to join a network of fellow winners. In addition, the winner will be invited to attend an event in the US in 2022 and a summit in the UK in 2023 to showcase their work to the global community.
Applicants were asked to provide a brief statement outlining their ideas on how they would improve the life of those living in Singapore. This could include a plan to tackle social and environmental challenges, or a specific project. They also had to explain how they would implement their ideas and why they believe their solution is the best. The finalists were shortlisted by the panel, which was made up of leading literary figures from Singapore and the UK.
The pool of submissions for this biennial prize was smaller this year, which organizers say is an effect of the pandemic. But the 49 titles on the shortlist still represent strong work across three genres and in the main languages of Singapore: English, Chinese and Malay. The awards will be presented at the Victoria Theatre on August 25.
Singapore is home to some of the most famous golfers in the world, including tournament host and two-time Masters champion Danny Willett and former Ryder Cup player Lee Westwood. But who will win this week’s LIV Golf Singapore tournament? Will it be Talor Gooch, who won the Adelaide event last month, or Brooks Koepka, who nearly aced the Masters in 2018? Find out here.
Singapore is a popular destination for tourists, and the country has even won its fair share of awards. This year, it was named the world’s most liveable city for a sixth time by The Economist, and won the top spot for healthcare in the World Health Organisation’s ranking of the world’s healthiest countries. Nevertheless, the country faces an uphill battle to maintain its position as an economic powerhouse, and must continue to invest in education, infrastructure and innovation. This will be key for attracting foreign investment and retaining its status as one of the most competitive cities in the world. Luckily, it has some of the best talent in the business to do just that. Click through to see who made this year’s shortlist. Then, make your predictions for who will take home the prize money this year.