Distinguished Contribution Prize

Our Distinguished Contribution Prize recognises sustained contributions to the promotion of excellence in the discipline of International Studies over the course of a career. Any nominee for this prize should have, at a minimum, contributed of demonstrable distinction to the intellectual development and leadership of the discipline in the United Kingdom. This could encompass contributions to teaching innovation, research, impact/engagement, mentoring/support, and formal leadership and/or administrative roles within and beyond their own institution. Overall, the recipient of our Distinguished Contribution Prize should have a rounded record of achievement recognised within the International Studies community in the UK and potentially beyond. They will have made a positive difference within their institution and within the discipline.

The nomination process

We welcome nominations (including self-nominations) from members, working group conveners, and Heads of Department/Schools. Nominees may be at any career stage so long as there is clear evidence of sustained contributions to the promotion of excellence in the discipline over the course of a career to date. It is not a requirement for a nominee to be a member of BISA at the time of nomination. 

Nominees can be from any area or subfield of International Studies. They need not be UK based; however, their contributions to International Studies research, teaching innovation and leadership in the UK must be widely recognised.

Nominators must provide evidence for all claims made about the nominee’s contributions to UK international studies. It important to evidence how these have been both distinguished and significant.

All nominations require the following:

  1. A completed nomination form
  2. A four-page CV for the nominee
  3. A 500-word supporting statement from the nominator which should:
    1. Outline the sustained contributions to teaching innovation, research, engagement/impact, and formal leadership/administrative roles that in aggregate constitute a distinguished contribution.
    2. Outline the main impacts of these contributions making reference to supporting evidence.
  4. All information must be included in this submission, either within the statement or accompanying CV. Please DO NOT refer to information elsewhere, for example a link to a website.

Nominations open on Monday 8 January and close on Monday 12 February at 11.59pm (UK time). 

The selection process

A selection panel is formed and chaired by the BISA Chair. Panel membership will be comprised of four judges who are representative of BISA’s membership. The panel will assess nominations based on the criteria noted above and make a recommendation to our Executive Committee. We reserve the right not to give the award in any given year or to confer more than one.

Past recipients

  • 2023 Professor Andrew Linklater (posthumous)
  • 2022 Joint winners Professor Christopher Hill (Cambridge University) and Professor Shirin Rai (University of Warwick)
  • 2021 Joint winners Professor Jenny Edkins (University of Manchester) and Professor Rosemary Hollis (posthumous)
  • 2020 Professor Margot Light (London School of Economics)
  • 2019 No prize awarded
  • 2018 Professor Ken Booth (Aberystwyth University)
  • 2017 Professor Mary Kaldor (London School of Economics)
  • 2016 Professor Barry Buzan (London School of Economics)
  • 2015 inaugural prize Professor Kimberley Hutchings (Queen Mary University of London)
Experienced International Studies professional

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