Through a joint USAID and Devex essay contest, you have the exciting opportunity to have your say on the most pressing issues in international development – and to be published along with the most prominent international development leaders of our time. The deadline for submission is this Sunday, January 8.

USAID is seeking five of the most interesting, innovative and insightful opinions and ideas for inclusion in an essay collection, along with essays by leading global development thinkers, to be released in May 2012. The best of the remaining submissions will be posted on USAID’s website.

The essays can focus any issue directly relevant to one of these topic areas:

  • Democracy and development in the 21st century
  • Pressure on the planet: climate change, resource demand and demography
  • Strengthening security to accelerate development, accelerating development to strengthen security
  • Competing in global markets in 2025: trade, jobs, growth, and the role of the state
  • Making markets and technology work for service delivery

For more information about contest topics and guidelines for submission, please see the contest announcement.

Winning essays will address an issue or idea directly relevant to one of the major topic areas listed above, and will present an original, innovative insight to help shape how some aspect of development practice is undertaken in the foreseeable future. They should focus on where the world is going and how developing countries and their partners can best prepare for future changes. We are particularly interested in essays that engage in broader debates on future-oriented key challenges to development, rather than essays that focus on analysis of U.S. foreign policy or foreign assistance.