Waterstones has is to sponsor the inaugural Pushkin House Russian Book Prize, designed to further public understanding of the Russian-speaking world by rewarding non-fiction writing from that country.
The annual prize will be £5,000 supported for the first three years by Waterstones, and the advisory board for the prize includes Waterstones managing director James Daunt, literary director of the Man Booker prize Ion Trewin and Andrew Nurnburg, head of Andrew Nurnburg Associates literary agency.
Pushkin House is a London-based independent cultural centre for the Russian arts and the shortlist for the prize will be decided by five judges, changing each year. This year's prize will be given to a popular non-fiction book published between 1st January- 31st December 2012 in English on Russia or the Russian-speaking world and will be announced at Hay Festival, with the shortlist revealed in April next year.
Andrew Jack, co-chairman of Pushkin House, said: "We are delighted to launch the Pushkin House Russian Book Prize with generous support from Waterstones. Russia is a rich source of culture that has inspired the world, but its creativity is often neglected in the headlines. Our aim is to encourage intelligent, popular writing and stimulate wider public discussion of the issues."
Daunt added: "I am very pleased that Waterstones is supporting the excellent work of Pushkin House and in particular this inspiring prize which shines a light on a some fine writing on a subject of endless fascination."