General Shabeg Singh Award

The General Shabeg Singh Award is an annual essay writing competition and financial award organised by the Sikh Education Council. Entrants are invited to write an essay pertaining to world security, specifically providing a solution to a challenging element thereof; the proffered answer should be universally applicable to as great an extent as possible rather than limited to a geographical or cultural space. The author is expected to write from a Sikh lens, basing their arguments on principles derived from Sikh history, culture and ideology, but this does not require elaboration or mention in the essay itself. The award is named to honour the revered twentieth century Sikh military strategist General Shabeg Singh, whose capacity to operate successfully within limited means for the service of mankind, in pursuit of truth, and to seek justice, places him at the pinnacle of standard-bearers of the Panth in this era.


Essays should be authored in either English or Punjabi and typed double spaced using font ‘Perpetua’ in size 11. Total word count should be between 3000 and 4000 words, excluding notes, references and headings. Main headings should be typed in capitals and subheading in lower case – both underlined for clarity. Footnotes should be avoided, although notes can be included where necessary to be published at the end of the article. Refencing should follow Harvard referencing guidelines: when an author’s name appears in the text, the date should follow in brackets, e.g., Ahmad (2000), or where there is reference to a particular page or quotation, e.g., Ahmad (2000: 37). References should be placed in alphabetical order at the end of the article.

The cover page should comprise the author’s full name, permanent residence (town/city and country), email address and telephone number. A disclaimer must be signed confirming that the work you submit is your own. A brief biography of the author may be requested from prize-winning submissions, as well as a profile photograph. We reserve the right to publish all submitted essays in either print or digital formats; this will be communicated to the respective author beforehand.

Eligibility, Prize and Judging Criteria

The competition is open to a person of any age, background and profession, worldwide. A total prize fund of £3000 will be distributed amongst one winner and up to five runners-up as is seen fit by the judging panel. The deadline for entry is midday on 1 September 2024. Essays will be considered for the award by a four-person team comprising the Chairperson of the Sikh Education Council, the managing editor of the International Journal of Sikh Studies, the editor of the SEC quarterly publication ‘Sikh Sunehan’, and one further individual invited to adjudicate as a guest each year. Successful entrants will demonstrate that they have carefully considered the subject matter pertaining to their chosen element of world security and proffered an appropriate solution, or solutions that are universally applicable. The highest ranking essays will exemplify principles derived from Sikh history, culture and ideology, without elaborating upon those in the essay itself.


Posted on

31 May, 2024