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Hester van Santen, a science journalist for NRC media in the Netherlands has won this year's European Science Writer of the Year Award.

Hester was chosen from the fifteen nominees from throughout Europe and will attend the ABSW Awards Ceremony in London next week (Thu 25 May) to collect her certificate and cash prize.

On announcing the award the judging panel said: 

"In her submission, Hester has demonstrated her ability to be at ease with both popular science formats and more investigative type pieces. Her work is remarkably well researched regardless of the format or audience targeted and is full of creativity with a great range of interviews. Hester's best submission is undoubtedly the article about peer review, which represents a great case study of a big problem affecting science." 

Candidate's were assessed on three pieces of work and all were nominated by organisations representing science journalists and writers from throughout Europe. Hester was nominated by VWN the Dutch association for science journalism and communication.

A further nominee Ivan Cadjenovic a Journalist at Independent daily newspapers “Vijesti”, Montenegro, was given a special mention by the judges for the depth and length of his investigation that dealt with plagiarism in science.  The judges found the text compelling, the source diverse and the overall journalistic approach very interesting.  Ivan was nominated by the Association of Science Journalists of Montenegro.

The European Science Writer of the Year Award is intended to celebrate the work of a journalist or writer who promotes excellence and creativity in science journalism and writing.   They are recognised for entertaining and informing audiences, for inspiring new generations of journalists and writers, and for innovation in their main area of expertise. 

The Award is only possible due to the support of Johnson & Johnson Innovation.

Read Hester's work:

Peer review post mortem: How a flawed ageing study was published in Nature

The humble ancestors of almost every living thing

What happens if you don't wash your hair for 56 days

Brief Biography: Hester van Santen (1979) is a science journalist at NRC Media, the publishing company of the Dutch daily newspapers NRC Handelsblad and NRC Media has a strong focus on science, employing nine dedicated staff writer/editors.  Van Santen has been working at NRC for 12 years and specializes in biology, having been writing about topics ranging from food science to human physiology and scholarly publishing.  In NRC’s 2016 Annual Report, her writing was characterized as thorough, insightful and entertaining.  She holds an MSc in Biology and Journalism from the University of Groningen.

Commenting on the award Hester said: “In my science journalism, I try to focus not only on the forefronts of science, but also reveal its inner workings, and its neglected nooks and crannies. I am glad the jury has honoured my work with this beautiful award.”

NRC media coverage of Hester's win

For further information contact:

Sallie Robins, Awards Manager, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.