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Judging panel for The Warwick Prize for Writing 2013 announced

Warwick Prize for Writing LogoThe University of Warwick, in association with Monash University in Melbourne, has today (Thursday 8 November 2012) announced the three judges for the 2013 prize: Professor Ian Sansom of the Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies at the University of Warwick, who will chair the panel, acclaimed writer Marina Warner CBE, and Professor Ed Byrne, Vice-Chancellor and President of Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.

Professor Ian Sansom said today: “The Warwick Prize for Writing is unique. There is nothing quite like it anywhere else in the world. Unfettered and unconfined, it acknowledges and rewards great writing of any kind, in any discipline, from anywhere. With my fellow judges I’m looking forward to discovering the best new work by writers in all areas of human knowledge. The winner of the prize might be a work of science. It might be a work of fiction. It might be a work of science-fiction. Like Matthew Arnold, we are simply seeking the best that has been thought and said.”

The coveted £25,000 prize, run by the University of Warwick, was launched in 2008 and is awarded once every two years. It stands apart from other literary prizes as an international cross-disciplinary biennial award, open to substantial pieces of writing in the English language, in any genre or format.

For the first time, the nominations process will be now expanded to include nominations from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. The Director of the Warwick Prize for Writing, Professor David Morley, said today: “Two values at the heart of The Warwick Prize for Writing are that all writing, at its best, is creative writing, and that writing is an act of community. By expanding the nominations process, The Warwick Prize for Writing is more global than ever. Its community is the world of writing and writers from any discipline or medium.”

Professor Ed Byrne, Vice-Chancellor and President of Monash University commented: “This is just another example of the exciting initiatives being developed through the Warwick-Monash Alliance. It is a truly global competition that crosses all disciplines and provides entrants with an international platform from which to showcase their written talent.”

Naomi Klein was the inaugural winner of the prize in 2009, for her book The Shock Doctrine, an exposé of how a privileged few are making millions from worldwide disasters, and Peter Forbes won the prize in 2011 for Dazzled and Deceived, a fascinating story of mimicry and camouflage in nature, art and warfare.

Submissions for the Warwick Prize for Writing 2013 are now open, and all staff and students at the University of Warwick and Monash University are invited to make a nomination by the end of March 2013. A longlist of up to 15 titles will be announced in May 2013, followed by a shortlist of six titles in June/July 2013. The winner will be announced in August/September 2013.

To find out more, please visit


The Judging Panel

Professor Ian Sansom is a Professor in the Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies at the University of Warwick and teaches on the Warwick Writing Programme. Educated at Oxford and Cambridge, he is former Fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge and previously taught at the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry at Queen’s University, Belfast. He is the author of nine books, including The Truth About Babies, Ring Road, and the popular Mobile Library series of novels. Ian writes for the Guardian and is a regular broadcaster on BBC Radio 3 and Radio 4.

Marina Warner CBE is a writer of fiction, criticism and history; her works include novels and short stories as well as studies of art, myths, symbols and fairytales. She read French and Italian as an undergraduate at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, of which she is now an Honorary Fellow. Since 2004 she has been a professor in the Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies at the University of Essex, and holds honorary doctorates from 11 different universities. Her books include Alone of All Her Sex, a study of the cult of the Virgin Mary, Phantasmagoria and the highly acclaimed Stranger Magic: Charmed States and the Arabian Nights, which was published last year. She is currently working on a novel entitled Inventory of a Life Mislaid. Marina was made a CBE for services to literature in 2008.

Professor Ed Byrne became Vice-Chancellor and President of Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, on 6 July 2009. He was a founding director of the Melbourne Neuromuscular Research Unit and the Centre for Neuroscience, and was made Professor of Experimental Neurology at the University of Melbourne in 2001. He first came to Monash University as the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine Nursing and Health Sciences, a role he held from 2003 until 2007. Professor Byrne was then appointed the Vice Provost (Health) at University College London (UCL) and held that position until becoming the eighth Vice-Chancellor at Monash University. The University of Melbourne awarded him a Doctor of Science, and he completed an MBA in 2005.

Notes to Editors
  • The University of Warwick is one of the UK’s leading research universities. It is consistently ranked in the top 10 of all the University league tables produced by UK national newspapers, and is ranked 7th among the UK's 100 universities for quality of research
  • The £25,000 Warwick Prize is entirely self-funded by the University of Warwick. The University is able to make such an investment as it generates the majority of its own income
  • In addition to the £25,000 monetary prize, the winning author will be awarded the opportunity to take up a short placement at the University of Warwick

For further information about The Warwick Prize for Writing, please contact:

Catherine Bailey at Four Colman Getty, on (020) 3023 9023

For further information about the University of Warwick, please contact: Luke Harrison, Press and Communications Manager, on (02476) 574 255 or (07920) 531 221

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