Award-winners are selected in a two-step process, combining an expert selection with a community vote.

Entries are submitted electronically based on a template that applicants must complete and could also include:

  • 2-3 photographs showing evidence of the practice
  • supporting material (in line with the criteria for the category; for example, data, press clippings, endorsements from other actors, or materials produced in the project)

Entries are first checked by the ESN Secretariat to confirm that they are complete and fulfil the criteria for the category.

The applications are then passed on to the expert selection panel who, after first analysing the entries individually, select a shortlist for each category based on the criteria for each category. In the evaluation process, an application may be assigned to a different category and applicants will be informed accordingly.

The winners in each category (except the Excellence in Social Services Award which is voted at the ceremony) are selected from a combination of the judges score for shortlisting and the public online vote.

The shortlisted entries are all invited to book a place for the Awards Ceremony, organised by ESN on 3 December, at which entries are presented. Attendees at the ceremony vote for the winning entry in the headline Excellence award amongst the shortlisted. The winner of the headline award will receive two free places to attend and present at the European Social Services Conference on 8-10 June 2022.

Indicative deadlines:

Deadline for submissions: 30 July 2021

Shortlisted nominees announced: 11 October 2021

Online voting system open for five categories: 18 October 2021

Ceremony: 3 December 2021