The 2023 prize will be held in Singapore, a city-state that has made significant progress towards cleaning up its air pollution. Kensington Palace said it chose the Southeast Asian nation because its “optimistic spirit of innovation and commitment to repairing our damaged planet” embodied the spirit of the awards. The city will host a ceremony and the first Earthshot Week to coincide with the award, as well as events featuring artists and musicians.
The prize is supported by Temasek Trust, investment company Temasek, decarbonisation investment platform GenZero, non-profit environmental organisation Conservation International and Standard Chartered Bank. The winners will be announced at a ceremony in November, with the winner taking home PS1 million to help scale their solutions and accelerate the impact they can have.
It is the latest Singapore company to make headlines with its generous gifts to employees. In March, restaurant operator Paradise Group drew criticism from online users for rewarding 330 of its employees with Rolex watches. The watches, worth a total of S$100,000 ($78,800), were given to employees who had worked for the company for 10 years or more, regardless of their position.
Harvard Prize Book recognises individuals who, in pivotal moments, have put the common good before their own interests and have changed the world for the better. It is also intended to inspire others to emulate their selfless acts.
This year’s competition saw the most number of finalists ever, with 12 books competing for the top prize. Writing in Chinese, English and Malay, the winners include Wang Qian for her novel The White-Faced Leopard, Ning Chong for his biography Magic Babe Ning, Suratman Mukoh for his poetry collection Snow At 5pm and Jee Leong Koh for her work Translating an Insignificant Japanese Poet.
The book prizes are the biggest literary prizes in Singapore, offering a total of S$10,000 each for winning entries. The top-ranking works are published by a combination of commercial, independent and government presses, including the National Book Council and the Singapore Writers’ Guild.
The winners will be honoured at a ceremony in November, with performances by musicians and artists. This year, the prizes will be awarded in five categories, including the People’s Choice award. The event will also feature a conference that brings together global leaders, businesses and investors to discuss how they can join forces to take bold action to address the climate crisis.
The Singapore Literature Prize is a biennial literary award in Singapore that honours published works of fiction and poetry in the country’s four official languages, namely Chinese, English, Malay and Tamil. The 12 winners receive $3,000 each, a trophy and gift codes to audiobook platform Storytel. The winners also appear in a special book. It was established in 1992 and is administered by the National Book Development Council of Singapore. It is also a member of the World Literature Association.