Singapore Prize and Singapore Literature Prize Winners to Walk the Green Carpet
SINGAPORE – Innovative projects aimed at creating a waste-free world, fixing the planet’s climate, reviving oceans and protecting and restoring nature will be highlighted later this year when winners of Prince William’s Earthshot Prize walk the green carpet in Singapore for the first time. Five winners of the prize, which was announced in 2020, will receive PS1 million each to help them scale their solutions and make an impact.
The winners will be presented at a ceremony in November, which will mark the beginning of “Earthshot Week” and also be held at the Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay. This will be the first time the event is taking place in Asia, and the venue is a fitting one given that Singapore is one of the top destinations for cleantech innovation in the region, said Ms Amy Jones, director of the award programme.
Ms Jones said that the prize is not only a chance for entrepreneurs to get global exposure and raise funding, but will also encourage more young people in Singapore to pursue careers in cleantech. She added that it is also an opportunity to highlight Singapore’s leadership in the field, which she says is proven by the investments and commitment by both businesses and government to push for greener growth.
This year’s winner, the founder of the X-Rays Without Borders initiative, is a self-taught biomedical engineer who has worked on developing medical imaging technology in Cambodia and Uganda. She said that the project has helped save lives and improve quality of care for patients, and it was a “privilege” to win the prize.
The Singapore Literature Prize is an annual book award that recognises outstanding published works of fiction, non-fiction and poetry written by Singapore authors in Chinese, English, Malay or Tamil. It is the only Singapore literary prize that awards writers in all four official languages and celebrates work that reflects the diverse cultural identity of the nation.
This year, a record number of writers have been shortlisted for the prize, with five being nominated in two or more categories. This includes Clara Chow, who was a finalist in both the English fiction and English creative nonfiction categories as well as in Chinese poetry. She is the first writer in the program’s history to be nominated for prizes in all three of these areas.
Poet Grace Chia, whose book Cordelia was shortlisted for the English poetry category but did not win, criticised the prize for what she called its sexism. She wrote in an op-ed for The Straits Times that the fact that the prize went to two male poets “reeks of engendered privilege”. She later removed the piece from her website.