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  • Nominations may be made by individuals, universities, government agencies, media, research organizations, and AAAS affiliate organizations.
  • Editors from publishing houses may only offer one nomination.
  • Self-nominations are permitted.
  • Prior nomination does not exclude a nominee applying in subsequent years. Re-nomination is encouraged.
  • Nominees must be individual scientists or engineers. Groups or institutions will not be considered for this award.
  • AAAS employees are ineligible.
  • Eligible nominees include active or retired scientists and engineers from all disciplines (including social sciences, mathematics, engineering, and medicine) who have contributed substantially to the public's engagement with science or technology. Public engagement activities must be above and beyond job responsibilities.
  • Nominees considered “early career” may be eligible for the AAAS Early Career Award for Public Engagement with Science.  Early career is defined as an individual who has completed their terminal degree within seven years of the deadline for nominations.

Inquiries may be directed to awards@aaas.org. Please include the name of the award in the subject title.

Selection and Criteria

  • One scientist or engineer will be chosen to receive the award each year and will be announced at the AAAS Annual Meeting.
  • Successful nominees will have demonstrated excellence in their contributions to public engagement with science activities, with a focus on interactive dialogue between the individual and their audience(s).
    • Types of public engagement activities might include but are not limited to: informal science education; public engagement and public dialogue activities, such as science cafés and science festivals; public policy activities; science communication activities, such as mass media, including radio, TV, books, and film; and social media.
  • The selection committee includes distinguished scientists, engineers,and public engagement practitioners named by AAAS. Decisions of the committee are final after approval by the board.
  • AAAS may ask winners to contribute to public engagement with science by speaking to groups of AAAS constituencies, helping to identify scientists to participate in AAAS engagement events, and participating in other AAAS activities related to public engagement with science.

​​​The award selection committee will evaluate nominations through the questions below.  Nominees will possibly excel in one category more than others. 

  1. Does the candidate demonstrate active participation in public engagement activities?
  2. Does the candidate approach public engagement work thoughtfully and strategically?
  3. Does the candidate reach a critical audience(s)?
  4. Does the candidate use appropriate and innovative messages to address important topic(s)?
  5. Does the candidate approach engagement in thoughtful and/or innovative ways?
  6. Does the candidate demonstrate a focus on active engagement with the audience(s)?
  7. Does the candidate’s public engagement have a high impact
  8. Does the candidate demonstrate excellence in their field of research?