Published: 22 Sep 2022 | Last Updated: 22 Sep 2022 11:26:36

The Royal Veterinary College (RVC) is delighted to share that Professor Alan Wilson, Professor of Locomotor Biomechanics is serving as the Chair for the Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize this year.

Professor Alan Wilson poses with cheetahs and the Structure and Motion Lab research aircraft while filming a segment for Big Cats with the BBC.
Photo ©BBC/Stuart Dunn

The prize celebrates the best science books for under-14s and aims to encourage young readers to satisfy their curiosity by immersing themselves in the world of science, with this year’s finalists including books that help readers discover how an insect diet could help the planet and how women have contributed to life-changing scientific discoveries.

Professor Wilson, who is also a Fellow of the Royal Society, is joined by a panel of judges including, award-winning author, Nathan Byron; primary school science teacher, Dr Katharine Pemberton; children’s author and winner of the 2020 Young People’s Book Prize, Izzi Howell; and Dr Tiffany Taylor, an evolutionary biologist and children’s author.

Together the judges reviewed several books before selecting a shortlist of six books for the Prize, all of which will now be sent to 700 schools, science clubs and groups across the UK where more than 15,000 young readers will also judge the books before declaring a winner.

The shortlisted books for the Young People’s Book Prize 2022, are:

  • Beetles for Breakfast...and Other Weird and Wonderful Ways to Save The Planet by Madeleine Finlay, illustrated by Jisu Choi
  • Fantastically Great Women Scientists and Their Stories by Kate Pankhurst
  • Fourteen Wolves by Catherine Barr, illustrated by Jenni Desmond
  • How Was That Built? by Roma Agrawal, illustrated by Katie Hickey
  • If the World Were 100 People by Jackie McCann, illustrated by Aaron Cushley
  • Microbe Wars by Gill Arbuthnott, illustrated by Marianna Madriz

Professor Alan Wilson, Professor of Locomotor Biomechanics at the RVC, Fellow of the Royal Society and Chair of this year’s Young People’s Book Prize, said:

“The books included in the shortlist this year will take you all the way from the top of the tallest skyscraper to the underground den of a family of wolves. I am pleased to see the exciting range of titles available, and I hope the young judges enjoy the shortlist as much as we did.”

Notes to Editors

The Royal Society is a self-governing Fellowship of many of the world’s most distinguished scientists drawn from all areas of science, engineering, and medicine. The Society’s fundamental purpose, as it has been since its foundation in 1660, is to recognise, promote, and support excellence in science and to encourage the development and use of science for the benefit of humanity.

The Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize is made possible thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor.

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About the RVC

  • The Royal Veterinary College (RVC) is the UK's largest and longest established independent veterinary school and is a Member Institution of the University of London.
  • It is one of the few veterinary schools in the world that hold accreditations from the RCVS in the UK (with reciprocal recognition from the AVBC for Australasia, the VCI for Ireland and the SAVC for South Africa), the EAEVE in the EU, and the AVMA in the USA and Canada.
  • The RVC is ranked as the top veterinary school in the world in the QS World University Rankings by subject, 2022.
  • The RVC offers undergraduate and postgraduate programmes in veterinary medicine, veterinary nursing and biological sciences.  
  • The RVC is a research led institution with 88% of its research rated as internationally excellent or world class in the Research Excellence Framework 2021.
  • The RVC provides animal owners and the veterinary profession with access to expert veterinary care and advice through its teaching hospitals and first opinion practices in London and Hertfordshire.

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