Nick Clegg to chair Russian Book Prize judging panel

Nick Clegg to chair Russian Book Prize judging panel

Former deputy prime minister Nick Clegg will chair the judging panel for the 2018 Russian Book Prize run by Pushkin House.

Now in its sixth year, the £5,000 award rewards "the very best" non-fiction writing in English that promotes public understanding and intelligent debate about the Russian-speaking world.

The judging panel consists of Clegg; Rosalind Blakesley, head of the department of History of Art at Cambridge University; Oleg Budnitsky, professor at the National Research University Higher School of Economics; travel writer Dervla Murphy; and innovation editor at the FT John Thornhill.

Clegg said he was "delighted" to be part of the panel. "As someone who has some Russian ancestry myself and has been intimately involved with the ups and downs of the relationship between the UK and Russia for many years, I cannot think of a better time to explore the current body of non-fiction literature about that great nation," he said. "I am hugely looking forward to immersing myself in the task with the other judges ahead of the announcement of the winner next year."

Author Douglas Smith, who won the award in 2013 and has gone onto financially support it, along with Stephanie Ellis-Smith, said: "It’s exciting to see another fantastic panel of judges has been chosen for this year’s Pushkin House Russian Book Prize. Their task will not be easy given an especially strong list of new books on Russia. I can’t wait to see who will be the winner."

Submissions for the prize by publishers are now open, and full details are available at the Pushkin House website. The winner will be announced in early summer 2018.