Home » Inside Out » Inside Out – Part 5

Dear Colleagues:

In parts 3 and 4, I had elaborated on how you could frame your entry – primarily speaking, writing an essay – in as comprehensive, relevant and accurate a manner as possible.

Today, I shall be discussing how the judges will be evaluating your essay, including the need for you to meet four evaluation requirements. At the onset, please note that it is important you cover all the four requirements in the essay, as each has been allocated a certain weightage in the overall marking scheme.

The first requirement is that you adhere to the question that is asked of you: ‘In the time period starting from October 1, 2017 to September 1, 2018, what has been the most important contribution you have made as an organisation, individual, project or service towards comprehensively improving, or contributing to the comprehensive improvement of, the condition of the world?’ (The contribution could be in terms of any one or more of 17 socio-economic or sustainable development targets, as defined in the Awards document (click here to access the 17 targets).)

While writing the essay, do ensure your answer to the question does not exceed 1,000 words and, equally important, is relevant.

The question explicitly asks you to elaborate on one important contribution, which means you will not earn any points for stating additional contributions you might have made to improve the condition of the world.

The answer in itself is not enough, for if you make any claims therein, it is mandatory for you to provide (attach) relevant supporting documentary evidence to prove their veracity.

The second requirement while writing the essay is that you discuss any ‘beyond the call of duty’ measures you might have taken in your contribution to achieve the objectives of the socio-economic and sustainable development targets, namely to protect, enhance and enrich the lives of people and planet. For instance, have you taken any steps beyond what is required by the country, or countries, in which you operate? For instance, have you as a potential applicant to the category, ‘Manufacturer of the Year (fire safety)’ ensured that your ducting system (say) has a greater fire resistance, flame resistance or heat resistance – at a comparable cost – than what is stipulated or recommended, because you believe you owe the extra measure of safety to society?

The third requirement while writing the essay is that you state any market-transformation initiatives in your contribution. To give an example, air conditioning ducts typically are characterised by the words, ‘pathway to pathogens’, because they often provide an ideal breeding ground for micro-organisms, compelling worried and earnest building owners and facilities managers to undertake regular cleaning of the ducting systems, a task more easily said than can be effectively implemented, given the complexity posed by lack of adequate access, among other factors. In that context, a market-transformation initiative by a manufacturer/supplier (air movement, ventilation) or manufacturer/supplier (air treatment) would be through introducing, say, self-cleaning ducts – an innovation that would give a tremendous boost to efforts taken to ensure better indoor environmental quality. A further feature would be self-cleaning and self-sealing ducts, which would also address the issue of leaking ducting systems and the loss of valuable thermal energy.

The fourth requirement is for you to explicitly state why you believe you deserve to win the Award in the context of your stated contribution. To give a hypothetical case, here you could discuss how despite a limited R&D budget (which you overcame by taking funds from your profits) or severe time-constraints you worked to ensure that your work contributed to improving the condition of the world.

The second and the third requirements are, no doubt, challenging, especially considering that they have never been posed before in the history of the Awards. The judges will take the newness of the two requirements into account while evaluating the entries. The intention is to encourage maximum participation in the Awards exercise.

Next week, we shall look at the ‘Other’ in the 17 socio-economic or sustainable development targets.