Singapore Prizes Announced

The President’s Science and Technology Awards (PSTA) is Singapore’s highest honour, bestowed upon scientists and engineers for their pioneering efforts in upholding research excellence and expanding Singapore’s pool of scientific talent. Established as National Science and Technology Awards in 1987, they were elevated to Presidential status in 2009 due to their pivotal roles in upholding research excellence within Singapore.

At this year’s awards, a new Innovation category was unveiled, providing scientists a platform to present their breakthrough inventions to a broader public in an attempt to win support for them. Other categories included Technology Transfer Award which facilitates transfer of innovations from academia into industry as well as Enterprise 50 Awards which honor local privately held businesses that have made substantial contributions to Singapore’s economy.

As part of the award ceremony, Prince William of Britain took to the green carpet to welcome five Earthshot winners across various categories ranging from solar-powered dryers that combat food waste to ways of making electric car batteries more sustainable. He declared that solutions presented showed “hope does remain” before pressing a button at Changi Airport to activate its world’s largest indoor waterfall – lit green to mark this special momentous occasion by celebrity attendees such as Oscar winner Cate Blanchett, actors Donnie Yen and Lana Condor as well as wildlife conservationist Robert Irwin were all in attendance to witness this momentous occasion.

Prof John Miksic won the inaugural Singapore Prize for History for his book Singapore And The Silk Road Of The Sea, 1300-1800 which disproved a common misperception that Singapore history began with Sir Stamford Raffles’ arrival in 1819. Instead, bits of historical information found in literary records – such as references to Longyamen and Dragon Teeth’s Gate in literary texts – had been misinterpreted to mean that Singapore existed prior to 1819.

Singapore Literature Prize 2024 Open Submissions! In other Singapore prize news, the biennial Singapore Literature Prize (SLP) has reopened submissions for its 2024 edition. Authors who have published fiction, creative nonfiction or translation books published in Chinese, English, Malay or Tamil languages may submit for this biennial competition that features an award of 3,000 SGD along with an engraved trophy prize pool.

The SLP, founded in 1992, serves as a platform to recognize Singapore literary talents and foster public interest in written word. Since 1992, more than 150 winners have taken home this prize which now celebrates 25 years. Furthermore, as part of its Readers’ Favorite exercise the public gets to vote online for their preferred shortlisted book in each language; voting opened on March 28 and closes April 24; SLP stands out as being one of few prizes in Singapore which recognize writers across four languages (for the first time this year a children’s book made the shortlist) while an introduction of new translation category offering $6,000 cash prize was introduced this year as part of the Readers Favorite exercise!