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Calling all MRC PhD students!

20 May 2020

The MRC in partnership with The Observer are proud to announce that the Max Perutz Science Writing Award 2020 is now open.

This award is one of the ways the MRC encourages MRC PhD students to develop outstanding communication skills and engage with the wider public about their work.

The award is named after the eminent scientist and Nobel Laureate Dr Max Perutz, an accomplished and natural communicator who died in 2002. Since the competition began in 1998, over 1,000 MRC researchers have submitted entries to communicate their research to the public.

The challenge is to write 1,100 words for a non-scientific audience and explain 'Why does my research matter?'. The winner gets £1,500 and their article is published in The Observer. There will also be cash prizes for the runners up and all shortlisters.

On winning last year’s competition, Akira Wiberg, of the University of Oxford, said: "I'm utterly delighted. It was unexpected so a very pleasant surprise and I'm very pleased that the disease I'm studying - carpal tunnel syndrome - has got a bit of publicity today, because it's very debilitating and important for society. I'm hoping to tread a career as a surgeon scientist. I'm currently a plastic surgery trainee but I want to carry on doing my clinical work alongside research and I think communicating my research with the public is very important. This is my first step in doing that."

For inspiration, read Akira’s winning article on our MRC Insight blog.

The competition closes at 17:00 on Tuesday 30 June 2020. For more information, and to enter the competition, please visit the Max Perutz Science Writing Award 2020 competition information page.

If you have any questions about the competition or its process, please get in touch by emailing sciencewritingprize@mrc.ukri.org.

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