World Bank Essay Competition 2006

Announcing the 2016 World Bank #Blog4Dev contest winners!

Hearty congratulations to the winners of the 2016 #Blog4Dev contest!

This year’s #Blog4Dev topic was about increasing opportunities for young people in Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda, and more than 1300 young people between the ages of 18-28 from those countries submitted blog posts with their ideas. Of those, five writers stood out: 

In Kenya, Mercy Anyango Okoth and Mr. Jeremiah Kerongo Riro, from Uganda, Fiona Komusana and Mr. Stephen Katende, and from Rwanda, Dominique Uwase Alonga. These winners will join me, Yasser El Gammal and Christina Malmberg Calvo - country managers of Rwanda and Uganda respectively, at the 2016 Spring Meetings on April 12-17, 2016, in Washington, D.C. 

To choose the winners, the blogs were reviewed by a number of World Bank staff who narrowed down an average of 10 finalists who were interviewed last month. They won in part because we were impressed by their blog posts, but also because they would bring an unusual perspective and passion to the trip.

Their winning blogs will be uploaded onto the World Bank Group blog site Nasikiliza starting this April. They will also be invited by their respective country offices for a conversation thereafter. In the meantime, here’s a little more about them:

  • Mercy Anyango Okoth, 19, is a third year Student of Strathmore University who is passionate about finance. Read her blog | See her video
  • Jeremy Kerongo Riro, 25, is a Bachelor of Commerce graduate of University of Nairobi, and a business consultant supporting start-ups and growth stage businesses. Read his blog | See his video
  • Fiona Komusana, 25, is a third year Law student at Mukono University, and an experienced blogger who writes about current affairs. Read her blog | See her video
  • Stephen Katende, 25, works in a rural Lwengo District, and is currently a fellow with ‘Building Tomorrow’s Youth,’ a program that creates incubation centers in various districts in Uganda. Read his blog | See his video
Rwanda Congratulations also to the following Blog4Dev finalists:

Kenya: Susan Mungai; Hosea Chelugo, Samuel Karanja; Stephen Mwangi, and Kelvin Githinji
Uganda: Namugga K. Rutwama; Ronald Nyakahuma, and Namwiza Ritah
Rwanda: Christian Rubagenga, Joselyne K. Uwayo, Francis Mugume and Twagirayezu Asumani

World Bank International Essay Competition

WANTED: your practical  ideas!  – Deadline, April 2, 2006

Today is your world! You’re making a difference. You’re working to solve community problems, such as lack of access to education or jobs, the spread of HIV/AIDS or conflict. Yet, the impact of your work does not always receive enough exposure and recognition. Participate now and have your voice heard! The World Bank and its partners invite you to participate in the International Essay Competition 2006 to share your experience and ideas on community work and participation in public life.

Choose one of the two topics:

Topic 1: How do you contribute to solving community problems?

You’re making an impact – or you have ideas – on working with your peers on important projects, such as: improving education, resolving conflict, limiting the spread of HIV/AIDS, or promoting youth employment.

1) If you have been personally involved in community work, write specifically about your experience:

Who have you worked with? Who have you helped? What have you accomplished? In what way would you consider this work to be innovative? How have you measured the results of your work?

Looking ahead:
How would you improve your impact? How can other youth replicate your experience?

2) If you don’t have practical experience, write specifically about your ideas:
How would you work with your peers to solve community problems?

Topic 2: How do you influence decision making?

You’ve helped influence – or you have ideas on influencing – decisions on important issues that affect your community:

1) If you have been personally involved in advocacy work, write specifically about your experience:
What have you accomplished? How did you convince decision makers to listen to you? What obstacles have you overcome? How have you measured the results of your work?

Looking ahead:
How would you improve your advocacy? How can other youth adapt your ideas to become more involved in decision-making?

2) If you don’t have practical experience, write specifically about your ideas:
How could youth better influence decision-making?

Who can participate

Are you:

  • A young person between 18 and 25 years of age from any country of the world?

  • Not enrolled in a PhD program?

  • Interested in global issues?

If you answer ‘YES’ to all of the questions, then you can participate in the Essay Competition!!

The competition is open to students and non-students alike, able to submit their essay in either English, French or Spanish.

Length and Format


How long should your essay be?

Your essay may not be longer than 10 pages (4000 words maximum), 1.5 line-spaced.

You are also required to provide an abstract of no more than one page. An abstract is a summary in which you explain the aim, the methodology, the reasoning and the main conclusions of your paper.
The abstract will be used by the jury to make a pre-selection.


How to submit?


The submission process for the Essay Competition 2006 is entirely Internet-based.
Essays submitted by email or post will not be accepted.

To submit your essay, click here.




  • Submissions will be accepted starting February 1, 2006 till April 2, 2006.

  • Each participant can only submit one essay.

  • Participants must be between 18 and 25 years of age.

  • Students taking PhD courses are not eligible.

  • Essays should not be longer than 10 pages (4,000 words, maximum), 1.5 line-spaced.

  • Essays can only be submitted online, in English, French or

  • Each essay must be accompanied by an abstract (max. one page). The abstract will be used by the jury to make a pre-selection.

  • All essays will be blind reviewed. References to specific individuals, firms, or schools, which might reveal the author’s identity are discouraged.

  • Quotes and references must be clearly marked throughout the essay and properly cited.

  • All essays must be original. No previously published material will be accepted. Any form of plagiarism will result in automatic disqualification. Please note that all essays will be screened with a specialized software to verify plagiarism.

  • We recommended that you write your essay in a word-processing program (check for grammar and spelling; clarity counts).

  • Contestants are asked not to add emphasis using HTML etc. Italics and other text formatting will be added to the finalist essays for publication purposes.

  • The World Bank reserves the right to publish and/or to make available to the public the winning essays.

  • The decision of the Jury is final and is not subject to an appeal.

For more information:


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