The Scientific Committee of the Sheikh Zayed Book Award has approved the short lists for its twelfth edition, following a series of meetings from 21st to 23rd of February.
The meetings were headed by Dr. Ali Bin Tamim, Secretary General of the Award, joined by Committee members; Dr. Khalil Al Shaikh from Jordan; Dr. Mohammed Bennis from Morocco, Dr. Kadhim Jihad from France/Iraq; Dr. Ali Al Kaabi from UAE; Dr. Dheya’ Al Kaabi from Bahrain; Mr. Samer Abu Hawwash from Palestine/Lebanon; Mr. Juergen Boos from Germany, in addition to Dr. Mohammed Badran from Egypt.
The Committee’s meeting agenda included the assessment of the detailed reports of the judging panels for all long listed works, across the Award’s various categories, including Best Contribution to the Development of Nations; Children’s Literature [including adolescents’ books]; Young Author; Translation; Literature; Literary and Art Criticism, Arabic Culture in Other Languages; Publishing and Cultural Technologies and Cultural Personality of the Year. The Committee also agreed on the cultural programme details planned during the upcoming Abu Dhabi International Book Fair, and went through the work progress so far, putting forward its recommendations to ensure transparency and neutrality ahead of the Edition’s final stages.
Commenting on the Scientific Committee meeting, Dr. Al Bin Tamim, said: “The Judging panels have done a remarkable job to evaluate a total of 1,191 nominations across all categories and to submit their reports against stringent and unbiased criteria to ensure a decision that is truly objective and transparent. This has been followed by meetings of the Scientific Committee during which we comprehensively reviewed the judging panels’ recommendations towards finalising the short lists which will be announced throughout the coming weeks in preparation of the winners’ announcement in March ahead of the Award’s Presentation Ceremony parallel to the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair.”
Speaking of the nominations in the session, Bin Tamim added: “We have witnessed a unique collection of literary and scientific works nominated this session, with a geographic variety from across the Arab countries as well as the rest of the world. Such momentum has been due to the positive drive the Award has on the cultural communities of writers, publishers and scholars, and underlines the intellectual value the Award promotes on a regional and a global level towards fuelling creativity in the works of culture, literature and humanities.”
According to the Award’s General Regulations, the Scientific Committee assumes the responsibilities of assigning the judging panels and determining the judging process and criteria against which nominations will be evaluated.
The Committee is also responsible for putting forward its recommendations to the Board of Trustees on works not meeting the criteria and any award to be withheld, as well as recommending the list of winners. The Committee also presents suggestions and recommendations on the Award’s categories and process as deemed fit, besides providing advice on any other matter of urgency to the Board of Trustees.