International Student Essay Contest. Is it Important to Live in a Democracy?

Deadline: 31 December 2018
Open to: all students, from high school students through graduate students
Benefits: cash prizes


Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs announces its tenth annual International Essay Contest, open to students of all nationalities anywhere in the world.

ESSAY TOPIC: Is it important to live in a democracy?

The essay should include a definition/explanation of the concept of democracy (written in your own words) and then explain why democracy is or is not important.


  • Style: Op-ed style (not academic, footnoted papers)
  • Length: 1,000 to 1,500 words
  • Format: Blog post on English language entries only.
  • Limit: One entry per person.

For sample essays, have a look at last year’s winners here.

Before submitting your essay, please review these plagiarism guidelines to ensure that your work is original and properly cited. All essays will be screened using the plagiarism-detecting software.


  • All students, from high school students through graduate students, are eligible;
  • Non-students are automatically disqualified;
  • Previous winners and honorable mentions are not eligible.


The essays are judged in three categories: graduate students; undergraduate students; and high school students.

  • 1st prize: USD 300 Amazon Gift Certificate;
  • 2nd prize: USD 150 Amazon Gift Certificate;
  • 3rd prize: USD 75 Amazon Gift Certificate.


1. Join the free Global Ethics Network (GEN) website:

2. Post your essay in the blog section and tag it with #essaycontest2018.

3. Please include the following:

* Your full name.

* The name of your school.

* Indicate what level of student you are (high school, undergraduate, graduate).

For further information please visit the official website.