RSL Jerwood Awards

The Royal Society of Literature and the Jerwood Charitable Foundation offer three annual awards, one of £10,000 and two of £5,000, to authors engaged on their first major commissioned works of non-fiction.

The 2013 Awards

This year, Tom Burgis won £10,000 for his book The Looting Machine (to be published by HarperCollins in 2015), Julian Mash won £5,000 for Portobello Road: Dispatches from the Street (to be published by Francis Lincoln in 2014), and Dr Corri Waitt won £5,000 for The Wisdom of Chickens (to be published by Quercus in 2015).

For more information about this year's winners and the works of non-fiction that they are writing, please download the press release. Photos by Adrian Pope.

The winners of the 2013 awards were announced at a small  party on 10 December.

The judges for 2013 were Damian Barr, Richard Holmes and Kathryn Hughes.


Submissions Procedure

These awards are for commissioned works of non-fiction. Details about the submissions process for 2014 will be available  here in the spring.


Past Recipients

2012 Ramita Navai (£10k) City of Lies 
Edmund Gordon
(£5k) for Angela Carter -The Biography
Dr Gwen Adshead
(£5k) for A Short Book About Evil

Judges: Richard Davenport-Hines, Caroline Moorehead and Gaby Wood.

2011 James Macdonald Lockhart Raptor: A Journey Through Britain’s Birds of Prey, Fourth Estate (£10k)

          Helen Smith Edward Garnett: The Uncommon Reader,
          Cape (£5k)
          Polly Morland The Society of Timid Souls, or How to be
, Profile Books (£5k)

Judges: Andrew Holgate, Mark Lawson and Christopher Potter

2010   Alexander Monro The Paper Trail, Penguin (£10k)
           Roger Beam                   Englandspiel, Haynes (£5k)
           Jonathan Beckman       Cardinal Sins - Marie Antoinette  
          and the Affair of the Necklace, 
Fourth Estate (£5k)

Judges: Claire Armistead, Tristam Hunt MP and Robert Macfarlane

2009   Caspar Henderson The Book of Barely Imagined Beings, Granta (£10K)

           Miles Hollingworth St Augustine: an Intellectual
Continuum (£5k)
           Selina Mills Life Unseen: How Blindness Shaped the      
, IB Tauris (£5k)

Judges: Mark Bostridge, Ferdinand Mount and Claire Tomalin

2008   Rachel Hewitt Map of a Nation, Granta (£10k)

           Matthew Hollis Edward Thomas: The Final Years, Faber

           Paul Farley and Michael Symmons Roberts 
           Edgelands - Journeys into England's Last Wilderness
           Cape (£2.5k each) 

Judges: Alice Albinia, Piers Brendon and James Meek

2007    Andrew Stott The Pantomime Life of Joseph Grimaldi, Canongate (£10k)

            Rachel Campbell-Johnston Life of Samuel Palmer,
            Bloomsbury (£5k)
            Daniel Swift Bomber County, Hamish Hamilton (£5k)

Judges: Hermione Lee, John Stubbs and Sara Wheeler

2006    Carolyn Steel Hungry City, Chatto (£10k)

            Sarah Irving Natural Science and the Origins of British
, Pickering & Chatto (£5k)

            Sarah Irving Natural Science and the Origins of British
Pickering & Chatto (£5k)
           Thomas Wright Oscar's Books, Chatto (£5k)

Judges: Roland Chambers, Moris Farhi and Hilary Spurling

2005    Alice Albinia Empires of the Indus, John Murray (£12,500)

            Christopher Turner Adventures in the Orgasmatron, 
            Fourth Estate (£10k)

            Druin Birch Digging Up the Dead, Chatto (£5k)
            Matthew Green The Wizard of the Nile, Portobello

Judges: Brenda Maddox, Peter Parker and Matthew Parris

2004    Jim Endersby A Guinea Pig's History of Biology, Heinemann (£10K)

            Roland Chambers A Last Englishman - The Double
             Life of Arthur Ransome
, Faber (£5k)
             John Stubbs Donne -the Reformed Soul, Viking (£5k)

Judges: Michael Holroyd, Libby Purves and D.J. Taylor

Apr 2014

Living with Shakespeare

Richard Eyre

Apr 2014

Auden and us

Alexander McCall Smith, Edward Mendelson

May 2014

On Tove Jansson

Ali Smith, Thomas Teal

May 2014

Jun 2014

To tell the truth

Helen Garner, Helen Simpson

Jun 2014

At home with penguins

Tim Blackburn, Vicky Fyson, Sara Wheeler

Jun 2014

On Character

Bernardine Evaristo

Jun 2014

Jun 2014

What we remember

Penelope Lively

Jul 2014

Beginning, middle and end

Karin Altenberg, Jessie Burton, Michael Holroyd, Deborah Moggach


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