The Stimson Center announced a new international essay contest today calling on students worldwide to submit their ideas on how to prevent the proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction. The winning essay will receive a cash prize of $2,000, an all-expense-paid trip to Cambridge, Massachusetts, to present his/her ideas at an awards ceremony to representatives of the United Nations, and publication of the essay in a new Stimson Center report. Additional contest details and submission criteria can be found at the link here.
“With extremist and terrorist organizations intent on expanding their reach and capability, there is a pressing need to ensure they do not obtain the means to develop Weapons of Mass Destruction – nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons,” said Stimson Center Senior Advisor Debra Decker. “We’re calling on the next generation of student leaders to submit their innovative ideas to energize nonproliferation efforts around the globe. Most importantly, the essays will help inform the United Nations Security Council’s comprehensive review of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1540 that is taking place this year.”
Ambassador Román Oyarzun Marchesi, 1540 Committee Chair and Permanent Representative of Spain to the United Nations, added, “The world has already seen several recent cases of the use of WMD by non-state actors, with Daesh using sarin gas in Iraq and Syria. This adds to the urgency of 1540 implementation.”
The UNSCR 1540 International Student Essay Contest is a project the Stimson Center developed with support from global partners and from the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs. The Washington Foreign Law Society is providing the cash prizes. Essays will address the following prompt:
Your government* is developing a five-year action plan for the implementation of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1540. Your government may be in a position to help other states implement this resolution or may need to request help in implementing this resolution. You are advising your government on what it needs to do, why and by when in order to implement this resolution and decrease WMD risks. In no more than 2,500 words, develop a five-year action plan that includes priorities and timelines. Make sure to include ways to measure success.
*Note that entrants are able to pick a country of their choice to represent in the contest.
The U.N. Security Council 1540 Committee will pick the winners. The prizes for contest winners include:
First Place — Cash prize of $2,000; an all-expense-paid trip to Cambridge, Massachusetts, to present his/her ideas at an awards ceremony to United Nations representatives; publication of the essay in a Stimson Center report.
Second Place — Cash prize of $1,000; an all-expense-paid trip to Cambridge, Massachusetts, to present his/her ideas at an awards ceremony to United Nations representatives; publication of essay in a Stimson Center report.
Three Honorable Mentions — Cash prize of $500 and publication of essay in a Stimson Center report.
Founded in 1989, the Stimson Center is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank devoted to addressing transnational challenges in order to enhance global peace and economic prosperity.