International Dublin Literary Award

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International Dublin Literary Award
Awarded fora novel written in or translated into English
Location Dublin, Ireland
Presented by Dublin City Public Libraries and Archive
Formerly calledInternational IMPAC Dublin Literary Award
Reward(s) 100,000
First awarded1996
Currently held by Emily Ruskovich for Idaho (2019)
Most awards1 (all)
Most nominations3 – Colm Tóibín, Colum McCann (author)
3 – Anne McLean (translator)

The International Dublin Literary Award (Irish : Duais Liteartha Idirnáisiúnta Bhaile Átha Chliath) is presented each year for a novel written or translated into English. It promotes excellence in world literature and is solely sponsored by Dublin City Council, Ireland. At 100,000, the award is one of the richest literary prizes in the world. If the winning book is a translation (as it has been nine times), the prize is divided between the writer and the translator, with the writer receiving €75,000 and the translator €25,000. [1] The first award was made in 1996 to David Malouf for his English language novel Remembering Babylon . [2]


Nominations are submitted by public libraries worldwide – over 400 library systems in 177 countries worldwide are invited to nominate books each year – from which the shortlist and the eventual winner are selected by an international panel of judges (which changes each year). The most recent winner is Emily Ruskovich who won for her novel Idaho . [3]

Eligibility and procedure

The prize is open to novels written in any language and by authors of any nationality, provided the work has been published in English or English translation. The presentation of the award is post-dated by two years from the date of publication. Thus, to win an award in 2017, the work must have been published in 2015. If it is an English translation, the work must have been published in its original language between two and six years before its translation. [4] The scope for inclusion has been subject to criticism; according to The Irish Times journalist Eileen Battersby, "many of the titles are already well known even at the time of the publication of the long list." [5]

Dublin City Public Libraries seek nominations from 400 public libraries from major cities across the world. Libraries can apply to be considered for inclusion in the nomination process. [6] The longlist is announced in October or November of each year, and the shortlist (up to 10 titles) is announced in March or April of the following year. The longlist and shortlist are chosen by an international panel of judges which rotates each year. Allen Weinstein was the non-voting chair of the panel from 1996 to 2003. As of 2017, the former Chief Judge of a US Court of Appeals, Eugene R. Sullivan, is the non-voting chair. [7] The winner of the award is announced each June. [4]


The award was established in 1994 as the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, a joint initiative of Dublin City Council and the American productivity company IMPAC, which had its European headquarters in Dublin. [8] James Irwin, president of IMPAC, established the prize money at €100,000. A trust fund was established to pay for the award and its maintenance. The award has been administered by Dublin City Public Libraries since its inception. IMPAC went defunct in the late-2000s when its founder and president James Irwin died in 2009. [8] In late 2013, the trust fund became exhausted and there was no money left to run the award. [8] The council agreed to step in and continue funding the award under the same brand name of the now-defunct company while seeking a new sponsor. [8] It was reported that the council paid €100,000 for the prize plus €80,250 in administration costs in 2015. [8] The award was subsequently renamed the International DUBLIN Literary Award in November 2015.

Describing the award as "the most eclectic and unpredictable of the literary world's annual gongs", the journalist Michelle Pauli posed the question in relation to the longlist for the 2004 edition, "Where would you find Michael Dobbs and Tony Parsons up against Umberto Eco and Milan Kundera for a €100,000 prize?" [9]

Winners and shortlists

YearImageWinnerLanguageNovelShortlisted [10]
1996 David Malouf.JPG David Malouf [2] English Remembering Babylon
1997 Javier Marias (Feria del Libro de Madrid, 31 de mayo de 2008).jpg Javier Marías [11] Spanish A Heart So White
(translated by Margaret Jull Costa)
1998 Herta Muller 2007.JPG Herta Müller [12] German The Land of Green Plums
(translated by Michael Hofmann)
1999 Andrew Miller [13] English Ingenious Pain Double-dagger-14-plain.png
2000 Nicola Barker [12] English Wide Open
2001 Alistair MacLeod reading at Cape Breton University.jpg Alistair MacLeod [14] English No Great Mischief
2002 2008.06.09. Michel Houellebecq Fot Mariusz Kubik 03.jpg Michel Houellebecq [15] French Atomised
(translated by Frank Wynne)
2003 Pamuk.jpg Orhan Pamuk [5] Turkish My Name Is Red
(translated by Erdağ Göknar)
2004 Tahar Ben Jelloun 1.jpg Tahar Ben Jelloun [16] French This Blinding Absence of Light
(translated by Linda Coverdale)
2005 Edward P. Jones [17] English The Known World
2006 Colm toibin 2006.jpg Colm Tóibín [18] English The Master
2007 Per-petterson-author.jpg Per Petterson [19] Norwegian Out Stealing Horses
(translated by Anne Born)
2008 9.13.09RawiHageByLuigiNovi1.jpg Rawi Hage [13] English De Niro's Game Double-dagger-14-plain.png
2009 Michael Thomas [13] English Man Gone Down Double-dagger-14-plain.png
2010 Gerbrand Bakker.jpg Gerbrand Bakker [20] Dutch The Twin
(translated by David Colmer)
2011 Colum McCann Portrait.jpg Colum McCann [21] English Let the Great World Spin
2012 Jon McGregor [22] English Even the Dogs
2013 Kevin Barry [23] English City of Bohane
2014 Juan Gabriel Vasquez 1.jpg Juan Gabriel Vásquez [24] Spanish The Sound of Things Falling
(translated by Anne McLean)
2015 Jim crace 2009.jpg Jim Crace [25] English Harvest
2016 Akhil Sharma [12] [26] English Family Life
2017 JE Agualusa.jpg José Eduardo Agualusa [27] Portuguese A General Theory of Oblivion
(translated by Daniel Hahn)
2018 Mike McCormack Bokmassan 2017.jpg Mike McCormack [3] English Solar Bones
2019 [28] Emily Ruskovich English Idaho Double-dagger-14-plain.png

Wins by language

14English1996, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2018, 2019
2French2002, 2004
2Spanish1997, 2014

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