About our grant assessors

English PEN runs two grants for literature in translation: PEN Translates, our grant for publishers; and PEN Presents, our samples grant for literary translators.

For both PEN Translates and PEN Presents, we commission literary translators who are not involved in the proposed projects, and who are specialists in the language and context of the proposed words, to write independent assessments (reader reports) for each application. These assessments are considered alongside the applications by the Selection Panel, an independent, cross-sector group of experts who determine the final awards.

We recognise the importance of access and transparency in the recruitment of assessors, and the value of assessment work to the development and financial viability of translators’ careers. As such, we have implemented an open recruitment process for our assessor pool.

Twice a year, during our biannual submission windows for grant applicants – in October–November and April–May – we will also open this form for translators to apply to join the assessor pool.

Joining the assessor pool means we will approach you if we receive relevant applications which we would like to invite you to assess; it doesn’t guarantee you will be commissioned to assess a proposal.

About being a member of our assessor pool

Full details about being a member of our assessor pool – including the roles of assessors for each grant and exemplar assessments; how we commission assessors; details on payment rates; and how we store assessor details – are available in the terms of reference for assessors linked below.

Apply to join the pool