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New Beginnings: MEI Digital Photo Contest
By Middle East Institute

International Deadline: June 8, 2017 – The Middle East Institute invites your submissions for our first ever Digital Photo Contest. This competition is open to all professional and amateur photographers around the world. The images should focus on the countries and cultures of the Middle East and North Africa.

Photographers may choose to interpret this year’s theme, “New Beginnings,” through a variety of genres, including:

  1. Landscape: Expansive views of dramatic scenes or unusual perspectives of the natural world.
  2. Portrait: A compelling image that captures an aspect of the subject’s character or identity.
  3. Architecture: Show us elements of culture expressed through structure.
  4. Cultural/Family Traditions: Share your favorite traditions by showing us what makes them unique.
  5. Nightlife: Show us an image that captures a compelling, unique, or social element of your city at night.
  6. Juxtaposition: Modern and traditional, new and old, familiar and foreign. Be creative and send us your best shot of two contrasting things seen or placed close together.

All photographs must have been taken within two years of the submission period. Photographs taken prior to March 8, 2015 are not eligible for submission.

Photos will be judged on originality, technical excellence, composition, overall impact, artistic merit and subject matter relevance. Photos will be reviewed by a panel of volunteer judges who will select First, Second, and Third prize winners, as well as a number of Honorable Mentions.


  1. First Prize – $500
  2. Second Prize: $250
  3. Third Prize: $100
  4. Honorable Mentions: $50 each

Winning photos will be displayed at MEI’s Annual Awards Banquet on November 14, 2017 in Washington, D.C.

HOW TO ENTER – No Entry Fee
All images must be submitted through our online submission form.

Questions and inquiries about contest rules can be emailed to Scott Zuke at

Founded in 1946, the Middle East Institute is the oldest Washington-based institution dedicated solely to the study of the Middle East. Its founders, scholar George Camp Keiser and former U.S. Secretary of State Christian Herter, laid out a simple mandate: “to increase knowledge of the Middle East among the citizens of the United States and to promote a better understanding between the people of these two areas.”

The Middle East Institute
1319 18th St NW
Washington, DC 20036

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