IBBY Announces the Shortlist for the 2020 Hans Christian Andersen Awards #HCA2020

IBBY, the International Board on Books for Young People is proud to announce the shortlist for the 2020 Hans Christian Andersen Award – the world’s most prestigious award for the creators of children’s and youth literature. Canadian illustrator, Isabelle Arsenault, is among the finalists. Congratulations Isabelle!

The complete list of shortlisted authors and illustrated is as follows:

Authors: María Cristina Ramos from Argentina, Bart Moeyaert from Belgium, Marie-Aude Murail from France, Farhad Hassanzadeh from Iran, Peter Svetina from Slovenia, and Jacqueline Woodson from the USA.

Illustrators: Isabelle Arsenault from Canada, Seizo Tashima from Japan, Sylvia Weve from the Netherlands, Iwona Chmielewska from Poland, Elena Odriozola from Spain, and Albertine from Switzerland.

Art by Isabelle Arsenault from Jane, the Fox, and Me.

Junko Yokota from the USA. is the 2020 jury president, and the following experts comprised the jury: Mariella Bertelli (Canada), Denis Beznosov (Russia), Tina Bilban (Slovenia), Yasuko Doi (Japan), Nadia El Kholy (Egypt), Viviane Ezratty (France), Eva Kaliskami (Greece), Robin Morrow (Australia), Cecilia Ana Repetti (Argentina), and Ulla Rhedin (Sweden). Elda Nogueira (Brazil) represented the IBBY President and Liz Page acted as Jury Secretary.

The criteria used to assess the nominations included the aesthetic and literary quality as well as freshness and innovation; the ability to engage children and to stretch their curiosity and creative imagination; diversity of expressions of aesthetic, and the continuing relevance of the works to children and young people. The Award is based on the entire body of work.

After the meeting Yokota said, “The jury deliberated at the International Youth Library in Munich to consider the 34 author nominees and 36 illustrator nominees from member nations of IBBY. Nominees were appreciated for their contributions and the jury arrived at the resulting shortlist after days of discussion. It is our hope that this award highlights each nominee, as well as the shortlist.”

The two winners will be announced at the IBBY Press Conference on Monday, 30 March 2020 at the Bologna International Children’s Book Fair. The medals and diplomas will be presented to the winners during the 37th IBBY Congress in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, 6 September 2020.

About the Award

Previous winners include: authors Erich Kästner (Germany), Astrid Lindgren (Sweden), Katherine Paterson (USA), Lygia Bojunga (Brazil), Cao Wenxuan (China), and Margaret Mahy (New Zealand). Illustrators include Peter Sís (Czech Republic), Maurice Sendak (USA), Mitsumasa Anno (Japan), Igor Oleynikov (Russia), and Robert Ingpen (Australia).

The IBBY members elect the Jury President during the biennial world congress and the Executive Committee selects the international jury of experts from nominations submitted by the IBBY National Sections. The members of the Jury assess the complete body of the work in all cases. All the candidates nominated for the Award have made outstanding contributions to children’s literature in their countries and are selected by the IBBY National Sections; a complete list of the 2020 candidates is attached.

The International Board on Books for Young People is comprised of 80 National Sections and works to bring children and books together. It is the oldest and most highly regarded organization in the world working globally for children and books. The Andersen Award is sponsored by Nami Island Arts & Education Inc., Republic of Korea.

The Author’s Award has been given since 1956 and the Illustrator’s Award since 1966. The Award consists of a gold medal and a diploma, and is presented at a festive ceremony during the biennial IBBY Congress.