We have a range of awards to recognise the best contributions from young people across each Topical Talk festival.

Global discussion awards


10 x students
10 x classes

During the Festival, when young people make high-quality contributions to the discussions that demonstrate the Topical Talk skills and knowledge, we award them stars.

At the end of the Festival, the students and classes with the most accumulated stars will receive Global Discussion awards to recognise the impact they’ve had on the conversations.

Find out more about Topical Talk skills and knowledge

Standpoint awards


5 x students

Students submit their standpoints at the end of a festival. This is their final say on a topic and gives students a chance to share their opinion in writing, film or audio. A shortlist of the best standpoints will be judged by senior editorial staff across The Economist newspaper, film and audio. Five standpoints will be selected as winning entries.

The Alastair Burnet award


One class will be awarded the prestigious Alastair Burnet award, named after the former editor of The Economist newspaper. This award will go to the class who has shown an outstanding commitment to the Festival and made exceptional contributions throughout the project.

The winning class will receive £1,000 to spend how they choose, so long as it builds on students' achievements in the Festival. For example, you may choose to buy recording equipment to set up a news club in your school or give your students a budget to take action on one of the topics that most inspired them during the Festival.

We'll invite you to let us know how you invest your prize money to inspire future prize-winners!