Business Book of the Year 2020 logos

Young would-be business authors have an opportunity to map a path out of the coronavirus crisis by entering book proposals for the latest edition of the Bracken Bower Prize.

Launched on April 27 and backed by the Financial Times and McKinsey, the £15,000 award will go to the best proposal for a business book “about the challenges and opportunities of growth” by an author, or authors, under the age of 35.

The prize — now in its seventh year — aims to encourage a new generation of business writers, and has already seen a number of shortlisted and longlisted proposals emerge as published books.

This year, while the organisers are keen to encourage entries across a wide variety of topics, they expect the prize will inevitably attract proposals that examine the specific challenges of Covid-19 and the aftermath of measures taken to lockdown economies around the world.

Jonathan Hillman won the 2019 prize with his thought-provoking proposal, entitled The Sinolarity, for a book about the battle between the US and China for control over the next generation of technology. It was the third time that he had made the shortlist with a book proposal.

The four judges for the 2020 edition are: 2014 winner Saadia Zahidi, whose book Fifty Million Rising, about the new generation of Muslim women entering the workforce, was longlisted for the 2018 FT & McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award; Jorma Ollila, former chairman of Royal Dutch Shell and Nokia; Isabel Fernandez-Mateo, professor of strategy and entrepreneurship at London Business School; and literary agent Lorella Belli.

The 2020 prize is open for entries until September 30, for authors under the age of 35 on November 30. Applicants are asked to submit an essay or article of no more than 5,000 words that conveys the argument, scope and style of a proposed full-length business book and include a description of its structure.

Judges are looking for a proposal for a book that aims to provide a compelling and enjoyable insight into future trends in business, economics, finance or management.

Up to three finalists will be invited to a ceremony in London on December 1, which will also honour the winner of the 2020 Business Book of the Year Award.

The prize is named after Brendan Bracken and Marvin Bower, architects of the modern FT and McKinsey, respectively.

For further details and to register your interest in entering this year’s prize, visit FT Live.

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The Financial Times and McKinsey & Company, organisers of the Business Book of the Year Award, want to encourage young authors to tackle emerging business themes. We hope to unearth new talent and encourage writers to research ideas that could fill future business books of the year. Register here for regular updates and useful information, including tips from FT journalists and past finalists about how to write a winning proposal.

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