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The John Maddox Prize recognises the work of an individual to promote sound science and evidence on a matter of public interest, facing difficulty or hostility in doing so. There is an additional prize for early career researchers. There is a cash prize.

Nominations for the 2021 John Maddox Prize are open until 14 June. 

The John Maddox prize is a joint initiative of the charity Sense about Science and the leading international scientific journal Nature. The Prize has been awarded annually since 2012 to researchers who have shown great courage and integrity in standing up for science and scientific reasoning against fierce opposition and hostility. Each year there is one or two winners, and an additional prize for an early career researcher.

 

Sir John Maddox, whose name this prize commemorates, was a passionate and tireless champion and defender of science, engaging with difficult debates and inspiring others to do the same. As a writer and editor, he changed attitudes and perceptions, and strove for better understanding and appreciation of science throughout his long working life.

The winner of the John Maddox Prize receives £3000. The award is presented at a reception hosted at Wellcome Collection in November.

 

Previous winners include Anthony Fauci and Salim Abdool Karim (US Health Advisors to the Government), and Susan Jebb (Primary Health Sciences, Oxford).

Nominations illustrate a wide variety of circumstances faced by researchers and communicators around the world, and judges consider these in the round. They also consider:

  • The significance of an individual’s effort to advance the discussion of sound science in the public sphere.
  • The nature of the challenge(s) faced by the individual, whether they persevered and whether those challenges were beyond what would be expected in their position.
  • How well they placed the evidence in the wider debate and engaged others.

Individuals should be nominated by someone who is familiar with the work of the candidate, though in exceptional cases self-nominations will be considered.

Nominations are to take the form of a letter of recommendation and include biographical information on the candidate and a description of the candidate’s work in standing up for science. Permission must be sought from the nominee. If possible, a supporting referee should be included in the nomination form.

Full details and nominate