Berggruen Prize Essay Competition

The Berggruen Prize Essay Competition seeks to stimulate new thinking and innovative concepts while embracing cross-cultural perspectives across fields, disciplines, and geographies. By posing fundamental philosophical questions of significance for both contemporary life and for the future, the competition will serve as a complement to the Berggruen Prize for Philosophy & Culture, which recognizes major lifetime achievements in advancing ideas that have shaped the world.

Here is Berggruen Institute Founder Nicolas Berggruen speaking about the significance of the Berggruen Prize Essay Competition:

As well as Berggruen Institute President Dawn Nakagawa:

The inspiration for the competition originates from the role essays have played in the past, including the essay contest held by the Académie de Dijon. In 1750, Jean-Jacques Rousseau's essay Discourse on the Arts and Sciences, also known as The First Discourse, won and notably marked the onset of his prominence as a profoundly influential thinker. Similarly, our competition aspires to create a platform for groundbreaking ideas and intellectual innovation.

The annual Berggruen Prize Essay Competition will accept submissions in two languages: Chinese and English. Each language category will have a prize of $25,000 USD and intends to recognize one winner, though there may be multiple winners in any given year.

The Berggruen Institute will host an award ceremony and convene the authors of the winning essays in dialogue with established scholars and thinkers at one of our global centers. We plan to publish the winning essays in our award-winning English-language magazine Noema and Chinese-language magazine Cuiling, giving readers insight into perspectives of both East and West.

We are inviting essays that follow in the tradition of renowned thinkers such as Rousseau, Michel de Montaigne, and Ralph Waldo Emerson. Submissions should present novel ideas and be clearly argued in compelling ways for intellectually serious readers. We are not seeking peer-reviewed academic work. Below is a selection of exemplary essays that epitomize the genre and style we look for. While some of these pieces are authored by already distinguished thinkers, we have chosen them primarily for their exceptional embodiment of genre and style.

Reedsy Best Writing Contests 2024

Berggruen Prize Essay Competition

Required fields are marked with *

Your current formal association with a recognized research or industry-specific organization or institution. Enter N/A if not applicable.
You are required to provide the name and email address of up to three references who are familiar with your written works. References should be a professor, teacher, or another person who has or had a supervisory relationship with you. The Berggruen Institute may contact your references to verify that the submitted essay is indeed your original work
It is optional to provide up to three previous publications. File format is PDF. Max file size is 1MB.
Please type a summary or abstract of the essay here (max. length 1000 characters).
Please enter relevant keywords of the essay here, separated by commas.
Please upload the full essay here as a PDF with a max file size of 1MB.