The Brearley Essay Prize

​The Brearley Essay Prize is an annual essay competition hosted by the Stubbs Society. It aims to foster strategic thinking and international awareness in current school students, as well as expose them to a formal essay competition.


We are excited to announce that entries for this year’s competition are now open. The winner and the two runners-up will be invited to lunch in Oxford and a guided tour of an Oxford college later this year, Covid-19 guidelines permitting. The winner will also be given a book voucher. Guidelines and essay questions can be found below. Please do write to us with any questions at




1) ‘The UK’s colonial amnesia has contributed to any flaws in its foreign policy.’ Discuss. 

2) Successful governmental responses to the Coronavirus are due to which key political and economic factors?

3) ‘There can be such thing as feminist foreign intervention.’ Discuss. 

4) Should current governments be held responsible for the actions of historical governments?

5) Does popular opinion have any significant impact on a country’s foreign policy?




Please choose ONE essay question and write an essay of 1,500-2,000 words. The word count does not include footnotes and a bibliography. 


Please submit your essay by emailing it in PDF format to The subject of your email must be ‘Brearley Essay Prize Submission’, and the body of your email must include your full name, your school/ sixth form, and your year of study.  


The deadline for submitting essays is 22:00 on September 15th, 2020


N.B. The competition is open to all Year 12 and Year 13 students attending educational institutions in the UK.

Wadham College, Parks Road,
Oxford, OX1 3PN, United Kingdom

© 2018 The Stubbs Society for Defence and Foreign Affairs

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