2019 Editorial Contest

The challenge

Write an editorial (350–800 words) on the following topic:

Evaluate the presidential administration’s policy toward promoting democracy and human rights globally and lay out the steps the United States should take in response to the rise in intolerance and the global democratic recession. 

Judging process

A review committee selected four finalists for judging by Carol Giacomo of The New York Times Editorial Review Board. Ms. Giacomo selected and announced the first-place winner and finalists at the 2019 America's Role in the World® conference (March 21–22, 2019).

About Carol Giacomo

New York Times' Carol Giacomo

Carol Giacomo, an expert in foreign and defense issues, joined The New York Times Editorial Board in 2007. At The Times, she writes editorials arguing the paper’s position on the leading national security challenges of the day, including the nuclear threats posed by North Korea and Iran; the wars in Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq; the rising threats from Russia and China; and the impact of America’s declining international leadership under President Trump.

Learn more

Contest guidelines

  1. Convince the judges of your view in 800 words or less. Your title and list of sources do not count as part of your 800-word limit.
  2. Essays will be evaluated on authority of voice, depth of knowledge, strength of argument, and grammar.
  3. Do not include identifying information in your editorial. The review committee will judge each essay on its merits, without any identifying information as to its author.
  4. Use at least two news sources. We encourage you to find sources that offer different perspectives on an issue. Make sure these sources are reliable.
  5. Cite your sources. The judges should know where you got your evidence. You can use MLA or APA styles or list website URLs.
  6. Have an opinion. Editorials are different from news articles because they try to persuade readers to share your point of view. Don’t be afraid to take a stand.
  7. Be original and write for a well-informed audience, but include enough background information to provide context.
  8. Do not plagiarize. Use quotation marks around lines you take verbatim from another source, or rephrase and cite your source.
  9. Any full-time IU Bloomington undergraduate or graduate student may participate.
  10. Entries must be submitted no later than Monday, March 18 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern using the contest form above. You will receive a submission confirmation via email. If you don’t receive the email within an hour—even after checking your spam folder—you can resubmit your entry. If you have questions about the contest, feel free to email jdcummin@iu.edu.

Writing an effective editorial