10 July 2017 | News | By Priyanka Bajpai
The top six prizes were handed out by the guest of honor, Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills), Mr. Ong Ye Kung. The top three winners in the Open category received S$5,000, S$3,000 and S$2,000 in cash prizes.
Singapore - Twenty-six winners received awards worth over S$16,000 at the 2nd Asian Scientist Writing Prize 2017, which was held on 7th July 2017 at the Science Centre Singapore. The top six prizes were handed out by the guest of honor, Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills), Mr. Ong Ye Kung. Sponsored by World Scientific Publishing Company and co-organized by Asian Scientist Magazine and Science Centre Singapore, the Asian Scientist Writing Prize is a biennial science writing competition that seeks to recognize outstanding science writers in the region.
The inaugural competition in 2015 received submissions from writers across Asia, including China, India, the Philippines, Japan, Indonesia and Thailand. This year, the organizers received 227 entries, extending their reach to writers in Cambodia and Vietnam. The top three winners in the Open category received S$5,000, S$3,000 and S$2,000 in cash prizes. In addition, the first-place winner of the Open category, Ms. Tara Thean, a research associate at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, walked away with a 3D/2N stay at the Banyan Tree Bintan Villa Resort, courtesy of the Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts.
Assistant Professor Juliana Chan, editor-in-chief of Asian Scientist Magazine, who chaired the judging panel said, “We were very impressed with the quality of the entries this year. Not only were the essays engaging and informative, but they also made the technical subject matter accessible to the layman. We hope that the Asian Scientist Writing Prize will encourage more people—scientists and non-scientists alike—to think more about how scientific advances affect us, as well as kick start a wider discussion about science and society.”
Apart from the top three prizes in the Open and Youth categories, ten Merit Award winners each received S$500 worth of book vouchers from World Scientific Publishing Company, while each of the ten Honorable Mention awardees received a personalized certificate. Winners of the Science Centre Singapore Youth Writing Prize, a special category for participants aged 13-18, received personalized trophies and a total of S$1,000 in cash prizes. “Science and technology are important components of nation building, and they have to be communicated effectively to everyone. We have in place effective learning opportunities that can empower the younger generation, and this creative science writing competition helps to inculcate a stronger sense of curiosity,” said Associate Professor Lim Tit Meng, chief executive of Science Centre Singapore.
The winners were selected by a panel of five judges including Assistant Professor Chan; Associate Professor Lim; Dr. Benjamin Seet, executive director of the Biomedical Research Council at the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR); Professor Steven Miller, vice provost (research) of Singapore Management University (SMU); and Mrs Doreen Phua, managing director of World Scientific Publishing Company. The Asian Scientist Writing Prize 2017 is supported by the following organizations: A*STAR, SMU, National University of Singapore (NUS), National Youth Council (NYC), Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART), Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT), the Government Technology Agency of Singapore (GovTech), SGInnovate, and the Science & Development Network (Scidev.net).