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The Economist Open Future Essay Contest 2019 for Young Leaders

What fundamental economic and political change, if any, is needed for an effective response to climate change?

Application Deadline: 31st July 2019

Eligible Countries: International

About the Award: There is one essay contest, associated with an Open Future theme (ie, the environment). The contest has a specific question and description to be answered. Details of the contest will be published by The Economist on the Open Future online hub at www.economist.com/openfuture/essay-contest

Essays should answer the question by taking a stance and making a case based on arguments and facts. We will select the best essays based on the quality of their arguments, not the extent to which they align with our views. Though good writing is important, judges will make allowances for those for whom English is not their first language.

Type: Contest


  • The Essay is open to people between 16 and 25 years old.
  • Essays should be no longer than 1,000 words. 

Number of Awards: There will be one winner.

Value of Award:

  • The winning essay will be published on The Economist‘s Open Future website and the winner will be invited to attend one of the three Open Future Festival events, to be held in Hong Kong, Manchester and Chicago on Saturday October 5th 2019. 
  • The Economist will pay for travel and accommodation; if the winner is under 18, we will pay for a guardian to accompany the winner as well. The top 20 finalists will be acknowledged online, and will receive a one-year digital subscription to The Economist.

How to Apply: Essayists should email their submissions by July 31st 2019, with the subject “Open Future essay contest” to: [email protected]. Please send only one, final submission, and place the text in the body of the email: we cannot accept attachments.

The essay question is:

What fundamental economic and political change, if any, is needed for an effective response to climate change?

Description: For decades the world has been aware that human activity is heating up the planet to dangerous levels, with potentially calamitous consequences. Despite efforts by government, business and individuals to curtail the trend, carbon emissions are still rising. Perhaps new thinking is needed, since previous attempts to deal with the problem have failed. So what might be done?

Please do read the terms of the competition.

By entering the competition, you agree to the terms of the competition, 


Visit Award Webpage for Details