Enter the Jim Dow Prize for writing competition

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The Jim Dow Prize for Writing has been established by leading property consultant CBRE (Scotland) in conjunction with The Scotsman to honour Jim Dow, The Scotsman’s commercial property editor until his untimely death in 2010.

Jim Dow was highly respected and regarded both by his fellow journalists and by the commercial property sector in Scotland as a whole thanks to his honest and open reporting style; his commitment to the industry; and his overall passion for journalism.

The aim of this competition is to seek out fledgling talent in the commercial property and journalism arenas, so we are asking the talent of tomorrow to see if they have what’s needed to take the first steps in emulating a successful a career as Jim’s.


The winning entry will be published by The Scotsman newspaper, online through Scotsman.com and will also receive £500 courtesy of CBRE (Scotland)

A further two finalists will be acknowledged by The Scotsman and win £250 each, courtesy of CBRE (Scotland)


To enter, all you have to do is write an 800 word essay with an accompanying infographic on the topic as follows:

“What package of fiscal measures should the Scottish Government introduce to stimulate activity in the real estate sector?”

Background: The attraction of new business and employment to Scotland is a competitive process requiring competitive advantage, as is the attraction of capital to support business growth. A particular challenge facing the real estate sector at this time is the asset disposal programme of two major banks. Looking at business taxation, should Scotland be proactive in the pursuit of a reduced rate of corporation tax for the country?

The construction industry (and by implication the development industry) is seen as offering strong economic and employment growth opportunities.

It looks likely that the Scottish Government will seek greater fiscal autonomy in all areas of taxation. Which range of fiscal measures would best support the broad real estate industry in Scotland and improve that competitive positioning as well as encourage speculative property development so that there is sufficient modern stock ready and waiting to cope with any increase in economic activity?

Your essay and infographic you would like to submit should be no more than 5MB, in Microsoft Word typed in double line spacing, jpg or PDF format and should be sent to suzanne.clark@smarts.co.uk by 17 February 2012, the competition closing date. Entries are to include full name, contact address and tel number, and details of the course and university you are attending.


The competition is open all final year undergraduate students on full time property, journalism and/or media courses at university in Scotland (property courses to be RICS accredited).

The judges will be looking for evidence of a clear and concise writing style, robust research to support any arguments and an understanding of how to present a balanced and well thought through answer to the question.


Doug Smith, chairman, CBRE (Scotland)

Bill Jamieson, executive editor, The Scotsman

Stewart McIntosh, freelance journalist and editor of ComPropScotland

Ken Houston, commercial property editor, The Scotsman

Graeme Hartley, director, RICS Scotland

Terms and Conditions

One entry per person. Entries for the competition cannot be returned. Copy and Entry Criteria form part of the terms and conditions. Applications must be submitted via email. Organisers cannot accept any responsibility for any error, omission, interruption, deletion or delay to transmission of the entry. The organisers many carry out Due Diligence on entrants. The organisers reserve the right to disqualify any entrant if they have reasonable grounds to believe the entrant has breached the terms and conditions. Closing date for entries is Friday 17 February 2012. Finalists will be notified by 20 April 2012. They must be available to participate in the awards presentation in central Edinburgh in May 2012. Prizes are non-transferable and there is no cash alternative. Scotsman Publications reserves the right to publish details of the finalists’ entries without payment for the purposes of promoting the competition. Details of the finalists will be printed in The Scotsman website. The Editor’s decision is final. Usual Johnston Press terms apply.