General Rules of the UNESCO Kalinga Prize for the Popularization of Science


The purpose of the UNESCO-Kalinga Prize for the Popularization of Science is to reward the efforts of a person who has had a distinguished career as a writer, editor, lecturer, radio/television programme director or film producer, which has enabled him/her to help interpret science, research and technology to the public. He/she is expected to be knowledgeable of the role of science, technology and general research in the improvement of the public welfare, the enrichment of the cultural heritage of nations and the solutions to the problems of humanity either nationally, regionally or internationally. The objective of the Prize is in conformity with UNESCO’s policies and is related to the Programme of the Organization in the field of the raising awareness and popularizing science.

Donors and Prize

The Prize is funded by the Kalinga Foundation Trust, the Government of the State of Orissa, India and the Government of India (Department of Science and Technology). It shall be awarded by the Director-General of UNESCO at an official ceremony held during the World Science Forum in Budapest, Hungary in November 2015. The one-time award consists of: a cheque for the amount of the prize US$20,000, a certificate and the UNESCO-Albert Einstein silver medal.

The laureate will also be offered the Kalinga Chair established by the Government of India (Department of Science and Technology) which comprises a certificate and cash award of US$5,000. He/she will be invited to travel to India (travel and lodgings will be funded by the Government of India), for a two to four week period to interact with scientists and science communicators. He/she will be provided with appropriate facilities to familiarize him/herself with Indian life and culture, Indian research and educational institutions, and the development of India’s industry and economy. He/she will also be invited to visit Indian universities and attend meetings within India’s scientific societies, particularly those of the Indian Science Congress Association. While in India, the recipient will be asked to deliver lectures in English and to take part in meetings in order to present recent progress in science and technology as well as the social, cultural and educational impacts of modern science. Thus, he/she should preferably be proficient in English.

Qualifications and Nomination of Candidates

Candidates shall have made a significant contribution to the popularization of science. The Prize may be conferred only upon individuals. A work that has been produced by two or three persons shall not be considered.

Nominations shall be submitted to the Director-General by the governments of Member States, in consultation with their National Commissions, and by non-governmental organizations maintaining official partnerships with UNESCO. A self-nomination cannot be considered. Each Member State and non-governmental organization may designate one candidate.

Each nomination shall be accompanied by a written recommendation, which shall include five copies of the following documents, in English or French:

  • description of the candidate’s background;

  • summary of the work or the results of the work on the popularization of science, including publications and other supporting materials, to be submitted for consideration; and

  • description of how the candidate's submitted work has contributed to the popularization of science

The winner is selected by the Director-General of UNESCO upon the recommendation of a five-member Jury. The Jury is designated by the Director-General on the basis of equitable geographical distribution.

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