Sharjah / Emirates Business
The judging panel for the 8th edition of the Etisalat Award for Arabic
Children’s Literature, which will be announced on November 2, has
been approved and appointed
by the award’s management. Organised by the UAE Board on Books for Young People (UAEBBY), and sponsored by the Emirates Telecommunication Corporation (Etisalat Group), the jury comprises five seasoned experts from the world of childrens’ literature. The panel represents various Arab countries along with one international expert.
Having ensured that the evaluation process is enriched by its jury, the award’s management has handpicked experts representing a range of experience and expertise – from publishers to academics, authors, illustrators and more. To uphold the award’s integrity and ensure complete transparency, the identity of the jury will remain undisclosed until the announcement of the final results.
The first jury meeting was held in Sharjah, where the evaluation process of the entries submitted for the 8th edition of the award began in full swing. Upon conducting a preliminary review of the submissions, the jury was exceedingly delighted to come across a great number of
high quality entries. The jury stressed that Arabic children’s books are
coming of age exhibiting a surge of talent in prose, illustration and
overall direction, reflecting a deep-seated desire to promote the ‘Arabic book’ as a primary and powerful source of education and entertainment for Arab youth.
With as many as 151 entries, the 8th edition of the Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature is witnessing strong competition.
Children’s book entries added
up to 87 and 64 from the young adults’ category have come in from 13 countries. Egypt has topped the number of submitted entries with 60 titles in the two categories, while UAE has 27 entries. Lebanon has 25, and 10 entries each from Palestine and Jordan, followed by Saudi Arabia with 7, Syria with 4, Iraq with 3 and Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Oman and Qatar with 1 entry each.
“We are delighted to have appointed and approved members of the judging panel for the Etisalat Award’s eighth edition. They have already started implementing their mandates following the deadline for submission on August 31,” said Marwa Al Aqroubi, President of the UAEBBY Executive Board.
Highlighting that in order to maintain the highest standards, the evaluation process has been conceived and developed as a perfect science, she added, “This year has seen the highest rate of participation since the awards inception in 2009. Jury members commenced the evaluation process with a precise method of sorting out all submitted entries, in preparation for evaluating them
and selecting the winning titles. We wish all the members success in accomplishing this task in a way that befits the reputation and prestige of the award.”
Al Aqroubi emphasised the strict measures that have been employed by the UAEBBY to keep the identity of the judging panel’s members absolutely discreet before the concluding ceremony of the Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature on 2 November 2016.
This has been done to ensure complete transparency and integrity in the process of nominating and selecting the winning entries. She also highlighted the rationale behind appointing new jury members every year, which lies in guaranteeing the highest levels of credibility and objectivity in the evaluation process – a principle that forms the backbone of these awards.
The AED one million value of the Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature is shared between five winners in its Children’s Books and Young Adult Books categories. These comprise of ‘Children’s Book of the Year,’ valued at AED 300,000 to be distributed equally between the publisher, author and illustrator; ‘Young Adult Book of the Year’ worth AED 200,000 to be distributed equally between the author and publisher; and ‘Best Text,’ ‘Best Illustration’ and ‘Best Production’ worth AED 100,000 each. AED 200,000 from the award is dedicated to organising workshops and international conferences to help develop the talent of promising Arab writers, illustrators and publishers.