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Applications are invited from individuals, multi-disciplinary teams or community groups for this annual prize, which is $100,000 USD for the winner and $25,000 USD for each of the other two finalists.

Anyone wishing to enter the 2019 Prize should complete the online entry form via this website by Friday, 25 May 2018. The shortlisted entries will be invited for a more substantial submission later in the year. Three submissions will then be selected as finalists and they will be asked to attend a seminar at the University of St Andrews in February 2019. Following presentation of their projects in English to the Trustees and invited delegates at the seminar, the winner will be selected and announced.

The primary objective of the Prize is to find innovative solutions to environmental challenges across the world. The solutions should be practical, scalable and able to be replicated in other places, combining good science, economic reality and political acceptability. The Prize offers people from all backgrounds around the world the chance to help transform their environmental ideas into reality and provides a network of connections and support.

The 2019 St Andrews Prize for the Environment is now open for entries. To enter the Prize the project must meet our strict entry criteria. Please review the below statements and use the check boxes to confirm the project you are submitting is eligible.

If the project meets ALL the entry criteria, you will be able to proceed to the next stage where you can complete the online entry form. All submissions must be completed by Friday, 25 May 2018.

Applications to the St Andrews Prize for the Environment must be written in clear grammatical English. All required sections of the form must be completed and incomplete applications will not be accepted. Evidence of the success of the project, both in terms of innovation and tangible outcomes, must be provided.

What Makes a Good Entry

1. Take A Risk

There is no such thing as a typical winner for the St Andrews Prize for the Environment. Winners and finalists come from lots of different countries, sectors, disciplines and sizes of organizations. The main thing is to take the plunge and pitch yourself against your peers.

We try to make entry to the Prize as easy as possible. There’s one simple online application form for the first stage, which we estimate can be completed in less than an hour if you are familiar with all the details. Entry is also free.

2. Innovation And Impact

First submission round screening takes place over an intense, time-limited, 4-week period in October. Make sure you follow the steps in the How to Enter section to give your entry the best chance of making the second submission round and to help the judges assess your entry fairly, accurately and efficiently. Remember:

3. Understanding The Process

Our Screening Committee use score-sheets and the team is looking for evidence in six areas. Drawing attention to the following aspects will strengthen your entry:

  • Originality
  • Innovation
  • Evidence of potential or achieved technical and/or business success
  • Impact on the environment
  • Impact on stakeholders
  • Wider application of your work

4. Benefits And Evidence

The best entries are always full of benefits and evidence. Data such as cost and efficiency savings, waste reduction, capacity improvements, skills development, feedback, sales and commercial success will likely impress the screening committee and score highly.

5. Entry Writing Style

The St Andrews Prize for the Environment attracts entries from all over the world, including many countries where English is not the first or official language. The Screening Committee and Trustees take this into account, but we advise that entrants follow these simple rules:

  • Submissions must be in English
  • Submissions must be clearly written for a general (rather than technical) audience
  • Keep sentences short (@15 words)
  • Use short words where possible
  • Use simple, everyday English
  • Be concise
  • Use lists and bullets
  • Limit the use of acronyms and make sure they are defined

6. Quality Versus Quantity

The Screening Committee and Trustees appreciate entries that avoid repetition and unnecessary or spurious information. Word limits will be applied to entries for three reasons: to make it easier to apply; to ensure fairness by making all entries apply consistent rules which are detailed on the online form; and to help the screening committee assess hundreds of applications equally. Many entries don’t reach the limits set, so consider the quality of your application rather than quantity of words.

Please make sure though that you write sufficient content to allow your entry to be considered for the next round. The quality of your first-round submission will determine whether you make it to the second round. It also lets the Screening Committee assess hundreds of applications equally.

7. Meet The Entry Deadline

The Screening Committee and Trustees reserve the right to extend the entry deadline by two weeks, but this depends on several factors. We advise you always to plan on submitting your entry before the specified deadline detailed on the website and don’t gamble on there being an extension. After the closing date for entries, the submission mechanism will be removed from the website and the page will say “entries now closed”.

8. Second-Round Submission

If you make the second-round submission stage – 30 entries are selected for second-round submission – you will be required to provide a more detailed summary of your project. If you make it to this stage, more information on the requirements will be communicated to you. Again, consider quality of content over quantity. You will also be asked to provide more photographs/diagrams and a short video clip of your project.

If you do not make the second-round submission stage, you will be notified.

9. Finalists Selection

The Screening Committee and Trustees will review a shortlist of 30 entries in early March when the three finalists will be selected. Finalists will be notified and those projects that were shortlisted but didn’t make the finalist stage will also be advised.

10. Attendance At St Andrews

The three finalists will be invited to attend the St Andrews Prize for the Environment event at St Andrews University in Scotland in April where they will have the opportunity to present their projects to the screening committee, Trustees and invited guests This presentation must be in English.

They will also be asked to provide additional information, photographs and/or video clips in advance of the event for the purposes of media relations. A project and photo sheet is prepared for each of the finalists, which is made available to the Trustees and the media.

11. Give It A Go – Variety Welcomed

The St Andrews Prize for the Environment features a wide variety of different projects/initiatives. What makes the Prize special is its network of previous winners and finalists and the wide variety of topics covered. Click here to see some of the Topics that you might choose to focus on, which have been featured in the past. Perseverance is important and new ideas are welcomed.

THE PROJECT

  • …is related to sustainable development and aligned with the UN Goals for Sustainable Development.
    (Find out more about the UN Goals for Sustainable Development)
  • …is related to community progress allied with smart and innovative development and use of the earth’s environmental resources from air, land and sea.
  • …is replicable from one geographic area to another and ideally be scalable in size.
  • …has a clearly defined need for funding that will make a step change to the project’s aims.
  • …has the ability to inspire others in the field.
  • …contributes to the global pursuit of sustainability in the short to long-term.

THE PROJECT IS NOT…

  • …focused on a special interest group or is exclusive of particular groups in society.
  • …a major infrastructure project e.g. construction of a building.
  • …a regular/annual event that is not connected to a new initiative.
  • …related to political activities, lobbying or religious groups.
  • …a project that is designed purely for fundraising purposes.
  • …a research project.

Eligibility

  • Be related to sustainable development and be aligned with the UN Goals for Sustainable Development – explain the alignment.
  • Be related to community progress allied with smart and innovative development and use of the earth’s environmental resources from air, land and sea.
  • Be replicable from one geographic area to another and ideally be scalable in size.
  • Have a clearly defined need for funding that will make a step change to the applicant’s aims.
  • Have the ability to inspire others in the field.
  • Contribute to the global pursuit of sustainability in the short to long-term.

AN APPLICATION WILL BE INELIGIBLE IF IT IS:

  • Focused on a special interest group or is exclusive of particular groups in society.
  • A major infrastructure project e.g. construction of a building.
  • A regular/annual event that is not connected to a new initiative.
  • A project related to political activities, lobbying or religious groups.
  • A project that is designed purely for fundraising purposes.
  • A research project.

The Right To Deselect An Application

Finalist selection for the St Andrews Prize for the Environment is the role of the Board of Trustees.  The Board of Trustees reserve the right to deselect any entry in which they cannot reach a satisfactory level of confidence in the application.

Topics

Topics covered by previous winners and finalists include urban regeneration, by-products from waste, health and water issues, agriculture and renewable energy.

Here are some examples of the type of topics you might choose to focus on:

  • Reducing human animal conflict – Using learnings from behavioural studies that honey bees can be used as a natural deterrent to crop raiding elephants and mitigating lion-livestock conflict and preventing lion killing
  • Water and biodiversity initiatives – Producing fresh water by desalinating seawater, or water containing etc.
  • Sanitation – Creating proper human waste removal and treatment and providing sustainable sanitation solutions using inexpensive and locally sourced materials
  • Air quality – Innovative cooking solutions to provide improved air quality and clean, economic sources of electricity
  • Solar power – Providing clean energy from the sun
  • Food supply – How can we make agricultural practices meet the needs of a growing population while safeguarding and improving the environment and the natural capital (water, soils etc.)?
  • Community regeneration – in thinking globally and acting locally what could make a community environment a better place to live and work and how might this heighten broader environmental awareness?
  • Communication and education – what practical and original ideas will get more people interested and involved in the environmental debate?
  • Waste and recycling – what are some original and practical ideas for limiting the generation of waste?
  • Environmental justice – How can environmental issues be tackled to show that these concerns are not a luxury for developing countries, but an everyday reality for most poor communities?

For more information, visit the official website of the 2019 St Andrews Prize for the Environment