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The Iona Institute essay competition

Post-graduate prize: €750 (second prize: €350)

Under-graduate prize: €500 (second prize: €250)



This is the first in a hopefully annual essay competition sponsored by the Iona Institute. The prize aims at promoting the values and beliefs of the Iona Institute.



Essays can cover such topics as:


– the right to life of the unborn and/or the old and the infirm

– Church-State relations

– religion in public life

– conscience rights of religious believers

– the rights of faith-based schools

– the family based on the marriage of a man and a woman



Rules and Regulations are as follows:


  1. The competition is open to third level students of any discipline from Ireland or studying in an Irish third level institution.
  2. Essays on any topic related to the work of the Iona Institute (listed above) are eligible for entry.
  3. The prize is divided into two categories: undergraduate and postgraduate.
  4. Each participant shall be permitted to submit only one individual entry.
  5. Submission must not exceed 3000 words (exclusive of footnotes) for undergraduate submissions and 7000 words (exclusive of footnotes) for postgraduate submissions.
  6. All entries must be original works. Multi-authored essays will be accepted.
  7. The entry may have been previously published. Copyright in the work will remain with the writer.
  8. Each entry must have a cover page with the title of the essay and the author’s name and college/university’s name.
  9. A short curriculum vitae should be attached to the essay.
  10. The deadline for submission is 31st August, 2017.
  11. All the entries must be sent in electronic form to abottone@ionainstitute.ie .
  12. Essays will be judged on their merits, including, but not limited to, clarity of argument and presentation, quality and depth of argument, and interest and significance of thesis.
  13. Submissions will be judged by a panel of academics. The identity of the judges will be revealed only when the winners are announced.
  14. Any type of non-compliance with the deadlines will result into disqualification. No request for extension will be entertained under any circumstance.
  15. The organisers reserve the right to vary, alter, modify or repeal any of the above rules if so required and as they deem appropriate.
  16. If there arises any situation that is not contemplated in the rules, the organisers decision on the same shall be final.
  17. The organisers reserve the absolute right to cancel, defer or postpone indefinitely, the competition.
  18. Prize results are final once announced.
  19. For further clarifications, please contact abottone@ionainstitute.ie .



The best essays will be published in a Souvenir Book and distributed at the awarding ceremony.