Translation prizes

International prizes awarded for translations


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English PEN

English PEN is the founding centre of PEN International, the worldwide fellowship of writers promoting free expression. Through its campaigns and programmes, English PEN promotes the freedom to write and the freedom to read. Internationally, English PEN campaigns on behalf of persecuted writers, editors and publishers. In the UK, it campaigns to reform laws that curb free expression, and for greater access to literature. It runs a number of programmes for creative writing and translation and a busy events programme.

Grants from English PEN
PEN Promotes 
(formerly known as Writers in Translation) has been promoting literature in translation since 2005 and is supported by Bloomberg. Each year, a dedicated committee of professionals selects between 8-10 books that are translated into English from a wide variety of foreign languages. English PEN awards grants to UK publishers to help promote, market and champion these titles. Its aim is to celebrate books of outstanding literary value, which show a dedication to free speech and intercultural understanding, and therefore have a clear link to the PEN charter.

PEN Translates! is English PEN’s new grants scheme for translation. Launched in 2012 at the London Book Fair, this unique new fund is open to submissions from all UK-based publishers. Building on the success of English PEN’s Writers in Translation programme, it is committed to supporting works of outstanding literary merit, strong and innovative publishing projects and diverse writing from around the world.

Juvenes Translatores


Juvenes Translatores is the European Commission’s annual translation contest for 17-year old students.

The 2016 contest will take place on 24 November — it will be for students born in 1999.

To participate, schools must register first — between 1 September and 20 October.

Rules and instructions are available on the EC website.

Literature Ireland’s Translation Grants

Literature Ireland‘s translation grants are available to international publishers who are seeking support for translations of Irish literature and to Irish publishers for translations of foreign literature into English or Irish. Eligible genres are literary fiction, literary non-fiction, children’s literature, poetry and drama.

Literature Ireland offers a substantial contribution towards the translator’s fees.

Publishers must apply at least three months before the translation is due to be published. Literature Ireland’s board of directors will meet twice in 2016 to consider applications. Please note that the board meeting at which applications to this round will be considered will take place in mid-December. Applications for works that will go to print/be published before this date will not be accepted.

Applications can be prepared using the translation grant application checklist (You can download the Word version or the PDF version).


All applicants must submit a sample of the translation to Literature Ireland, which is then assessed by an independent expert. The expert will prepare a report that is submitted, with the original application, to Literature Ireland’s board of directors for consideration.

Successful applicants will be sent a formal letter of award, and contracts will be posted within ten days of the board meeting.

Publishers awarded a grant must submit the following items to Literature Ireland in order to receive payment of the translation grant:

– A draft of the copyright page of the book containing an acknowledgment of Literature Ireland’s financial support (this must be submitted to Literature Ireland for approval before the book goes to print)
– Proof of payment to the translator(s) in the form of a statement of the fee received, signed by both the translator(s) and a representative of the publishing house.
– Eight copies of the published work.

Please note: Literature Ireland will normally only award a maximum of three translation grants per annum to a given publisher.

Should you have any questions in relation to the application process, you can contact Literature Island at ritaATirelandliteratureDOTcom or by phone on 00353 (0)1 896 4184.

Literaturport – resources for translators of German literature

A list of bursaries, stipends, prizes and other funds for translators of German literature can be found at Literaturport.

The Syracuse University Press and University of Arkansas, King Fahd Center for Middle East Studies Translation of Arabic Literature Award

The Syracuse University Press and University of Arkansas, King Fahd Center for Middle East Studies Translation of Arabic Literature Award. For an unpublished manuscript (you need to have the rights free and clear), winner to be published by SUP. Previous winners include Samah Selim’s translation of Tree of Pearls (Jurji Zaidan), Yasmeen Hanoosh’s translation of Scattered Crumbs (Muhsin al-Ramli), and Issa Boullata’s translation of The Square Moon (Ghada Samman). Submission details here .

Academia Rossica

Academia Rossica is a cultural organisation set up in 2000 to promote and strengthen cultural and intellectual ties between Russia and the English-speaking world, pioneering intercultural projects and bringing the best of contemporary Russian culture to the outside world. With offices in London and Moscow, Academia Rossica acts as a bridge between these two thriving cultural capitals.

Academia Rossica runs a programme of cultural events, including the London Russian Film Festival and aims to provide a platform for intellectual exchange between Russia and the UK through the Russian Publishers stand at the London Book Fair. Academia Rossica invites contemporary Russian writers and critics for a programme of seminars and discussions during the SLOVO Festival. There are also two literary translation awards presented by Academia Rossica: The Rossica Prize, for the best literary translation from Russian into English, and the Rossica Young Translators Prize, for anyone under 25.

Academy of American Poets, Raisziss/de Palchi Translation Award

Academy of American Poets, Raisziss/de Palchi Translation Award, 588 Broadway, Suite 604, New York, NY 10012. (212) 274-0343. Award recognizes translations into English of modern Italian poetry; fellowship winner receives $20,000 and a residency at the American Academy in Rome. Submissions in even-numbered years.

Associations ATLAS : Assises de la Traduction littéraire en Arles (France)

ATLAS is a cultural association, based in Paris and Arles. It aims to promote literature in translation as a creative activity, and to link specialists and individuals interested in literary translation. ATLAS organises a conference on literary translation every year in Arles and manages the International College of Literary Translators (CITL) in Arles.

The CITL in Arles provides accommodation for translators and bursaries (financed by the Centre National du Livre). Information about literary awards and prizes is available at


Asymptote is an international journal dedicated to literary translation and bringing together in one place the best in contemporary writing. Asymptote is interested in encounters between languages and the consequences of these encounters. Published four times a year, Asymptote features poetry, prose, non-fiction and interviews from around the world.

In 2013 Asymptote launched a translation contest – “Close Approximations” which is open for submissions of prose and poetry between June 1st to September the 1st, 2013.

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