Cornell University’s researchers and scholars consistently translate discovery into meaningful, measurable impact that is changing the world for the better. Together with the Vice Provost of Research, the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) is committed to helping faculty members receive the formal recognition they have earned.
This page lists of some of the most prestigious national and international awards for which our faculty can be nominated.
- For Cornell’s highest priority awards, OSP will support the nomination process by assisting the nominator and faculty nominee in assembling the required materials.
- For all other awards, OSP will post online reminders and distribute a regular newsletter about upcoming due dates and internal limited nomination competitions.
We will also celebrate our new award winners with profiles outlining their accomplishments, and by providing a link to the list of Cornell winners of many of the awards in the award description.
Together, we can accomplish great things.
Questions about nominations or awards? Know of an award not currently on our list? Contact Carmel Lee
If you win a prize/award/fellowship, use the Award Received Notification Form to let us know so that the Cornell Community can celebrate with you.
Prestigious Multidisciplinary Awards
The medal is the Society's highest award for the arts, humanities, and social sciences.
Nominations: Up to two nominations may be made by the president of each institution.
Cornell Recipients | Thomas Jefferson Medal
The Fulbright Distinguished Chairs Program comprises approximately forty distinguished lecturing, distinguished research and distinguished lecturing/research awards ranging from three to 12 months. Awards in the Fulbright Distinguished Chairs Program are viewed as among the most prestigious appointments in the Fulbright Scholar Program.
Applications: Various awards available and the application process is different for each.
Timeline: For the core Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program, August 1st is the typical application deadline.
The award is granted in recognition of a researcher's entire achievements to date to academics whose fundamental discoveries, new theories, or insights have had a significant impact on their own discipline and who are expected to continue producing cutting-edge achievements in the future. Award winners are invited to spend a period of up to one year cooperating on a long-term research project with specialist colleagues at a research institution in Germany. The stay may be divided up into blocks.
Nominations: Nominations may be submitted online by established academics in Germany. Nominations may also be initiated by award winners of the Humboldt Foundation working abroad, provided that the nomination is made jointly with a colleague working in Germany. Direct applications are not accepted. Accepted on an ongoing basis; selection committee meets two to three times per year.
Timeline: Nominations may be submitted online at any time
The Japan Prize is awarded annually to scientists and engineers from around the world who have made significant contributions to the advancement of science and technology, thereby furthering the cause of peace and the prosperity of mankind. Each year, two fields of scientific endeavors are honored. The Japan Prize laureates receive a certificate of merit and a prize medal.
Nominations: The foundation calls for over 15,000 nominators, strictly comprised of prominent scientists and researchers from around the world invited by the Foundation, to nominate the candidates through the web by JPNS (Japan Prize Nomination System).
Timeline: Closing date for nominations is the end of January for following year. Every November, the Field Selection Committee of The Japan Prize Foundation designates and announces two fields in which the Japan Prize will be awarded two years hence.
Often characterized as “midcareer” awards, Guggenheim Fellowships are intended for men and women who have already demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts. Guggenheim Fellowships are grants to selected individuals made for a minimum of six months and a maximum of twelve months.
Applications: Self nomination. The Foundation receives between 3,500 and 4,000 applications each year. Although no one who applies is guaranteed success in the competition, there is no prescreening: all applications are reviewed. Approximately 200 Fellowships are awarded each year.
Timeline: Approximate deadline is September 17
The Lasker Awards have been awarded annually since 1945 to living persons who have made major contributions to medical science or who have performed public service on behalf of medicine. The awards are sometimes referred to as "America's Nobels". Lasker Award has gained a reputation for identifying future winners of the Nobel Prize. The different awards are as follows:
Albert Lasker Basic Medical Research Award: For a fundamental discovery that opens up a new area of biomedical science.
Lasker DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award: For a major advance that improves the lives of many thousands of people.
Lasker Koshland Special Achievement Award in Medical Science: For research accomplishments and scientific statesmanship that engender the deepest feelings of awe and respect.
Nominations: Colleagues familiar with the nominee(s)'s work and with the relevant field of research (or area of public service) are ideal nominators. Self-nominations or nominations written by the candidates themselves will not be considered by the Jury.
The MacArthur Fellows Program awards unrestricted fellowships to talented individuals who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction. Although nominees are reviewed for their achievements, the fellowship is not a reward for past accomplishment, but rather an investment in a person's originality, insight, and potential. Indeed, the purpose of the MacArthur Fellows Program is to enable recipients to exercise their own creative instincts for the benefit of human society.
Nominations: The Fellows Program does not accept applications or unsolicited nominations. Nominees are brought to the Program's attention through a constantly changing pool of invited external nominators chosen from as broad a range of fields and areas of interest as possible.
Fellowships support individuals advancing research that is of value to humanities scholars, general audiences, or both. Recipients usually produce articles, monographs, books, digital materials, archaeological site reports, translations, editions, or other scholarly resources in the humanities. Projects may be at any stage of development.
Applications: Applicants will be asked to complete an online application form and to upload the following documents: 1,000-word project proposal, short bibliography, curriculum vitae, and a one-page tentative outline of the structure of the project. Online submissions are processed via grants.gov
Timeline: Online application system is open at the beginning of July; application deadline including the reference letters is mid-October.
The acclaimed Wolf Prize is an annual award of $100,000 to outstanding scientists and artists from around the world for achievements in the interest of mankind and friendly relations among peoples. The prize laureates are selected by international Jury Committees of world-renowned professionals from all over the world.
Nominations: By invitation only. Those wishing to submit a nomination should contact the Wolf office. Self-nominations are not permitted.
Timeline: The submission system opens at the beginning of April. Deadline for nominations is approximately mid-September.
The World Food Prize has come to be known as the "Nobel Prize for Food and Agriculture" and aims to recognize and inspire breakthrough achievements in feeding the world. This $250,000 prize is awarded to individuals who have improved the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.
Nominations: Any academic institution, private or public organization, or governmental unit may submit a nomination for the World Food Prize.
Timeline: Nomination deadline approximately beginning of May.
Intended to provide research support to the most promising young faculty members in the early stages of academic careers in the chemical and life sciences particularly to foster the invention of methods, instruments and materials that will open up new avenues of research in science.
Applications: First step is Letter of Intent describing project and rationale; candidates invited to apply are then notified and given further information.
Timeline: Letter of intent submission due in September; candidates invited to apply in December; award announcements in July.
The Cottrell Scholar Award develops outstanding teacher-scholars who are recognized by their scientific communities for the quality and innovation of their research programs and their academic leadership skills. The Cottrell Scholar Award provides entry into a national community of outstanding scholar-educators who produce significant research and educational outcomes.
Applications: Potential CSA applicants begin the submission process by completing the online eligibility quiz. If eligible, applicants gain access to a web page containing the CSA pre-proposal application form and instructions for electronic submission. Only applicants with successful pre-proposals are invited to submit Cottrell Scholar proposals and are given access to full proposal application forms. Submissions must conform to guidelines and directions, and be endorsed by the applicant's home institution.
Timeline: Application Portal Open: Feb. 1, 2019; Pre-proposal Deadline: April 15, 2019; Invitations for Full Proposals Sent: May 1, 2019
The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.
Applications: Only Assistant Professors without tenure are eligible to apply. Press the 'Applicant FAQ' button for frequently asked questions.
Timeline: July submission deadline for applications.
Intended to recognize some of the finest scientists and engineers who, while early in their research careers, show exceptional potential for leadership at the frontiers of scientific knowledge during the twenty-first century. The PECASE Award is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on outstanding scientists and engineers beginning their independent careers.
Selection for this award is based on two important criteria:
- Innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology that is relevant to the mission of NSF
- Community service demonstrated through scientific leadership, education or community outreach
Nominations: Individuals cannot apply for PECASE. These awards are initiated by the participating federal agencies. At NSF, up to twenty nominees for this award are selected each year from among the PECASE-eligible CAREER awardees who are most likely to become the leaders of academic research and education in the twenty-first century.
Cornell Recipients | PECASE Awards
Awarded to thirty emerging artists and scholars in the early or middle stages of their careers who represent the highest standard of excellence in the arts and humanities.
Fellows are chosen from the following prize fields: Architecture, Design, Historic Preservation and Conservation, Landscape Architecture, Literature (awarded only by nomination through the American Academy of Arts and Letters), Musical Composition, Visual Arts, Ancient Studies, Medieval Studies, Renaissance and Early Modern Studies, Modern Italian Studies.
Applications: Self. Applicants must be United States citizens at the time of application.
Timeline: Approximately November 1.
The Sloan Research Fellowships seek to stimulate fundamental research by early-career scientists and scholars of outstanding promise. These two-year fellowships are awarded yearly to 126 researchers in recognition of distinguished performance and a unique potential to make substantial contributions to their field.
Nominations: Candidates may nominate themselves. All nomination materials for the Sloan Research Fellowships must be uploaded electronically through Interfolio.com.
Timeline: Nominations open in summer and are to be submitted by mid-September.
The prize is awarded for contributions to the social sciences (broadly defined). An effort is made to rotate the prize among the various social science disciplines, including law, history, and linguistics.
Cornell Recipients | Talcott Parsons Prize
The Academy membership encompasses over 4,600 Fellows and 600 Foreign Honorary Members and reflects the full range of disciplines and professions: mathematics, the physical and biological sciences, medicine, the social sciences and humanities, business, government, public affairs, and the arts. Among the Academy's Fellows are more than 250 Nobel laureates and 60 Pulitzer Prize winners.
Nominations: Annually, Academy members receive a call for nominations. Each candidate for membership must have two nominators who are already members. The nominators must be from different institutions from each other, and at least one must be from the United States.
Cornell Recipients | American Academy of Arts & Sciences
The ACLS Fellowship program invites research applications in all disciplines of the humanities and related social sciences. The ultimate goal of the project should be a major piece of scholarly work by the applicant. ACLS does not fund creative work (e.g., novels or films), textbooks, straightforward translation, or pedagogical projects. The ACLS Fellowships are intended as salary replacement to help scholars devote six to twelve continuous months to full-time research and writing. ACLS Fellowships are portable and are tenable at the fellow's home institution, abroad, or at another appropriate site for research.
Applications: Online submission including two reference letters.
Timeline: September deadline; notifications in February
The AERA Fellows Program honors education researchers for their exceptional contributions to, and excellence in, education research. The program is intended to be inclusive of the scholarship that constitutes and enriches education research as an interdisciplinary field.
Nominations: Fellows are nominated by their peers. Self-nominations will not be accepted. Two persons should not knowingly nominate each other. All nominees, nominators, and endorsers must be current AERA members. In addition, either the nominator or one of the endorsers of a nominee must be an AERA Fellow. Nominators and endorsers must not be from the same institution as the nominee. Members of the AERA Fellows Committee are not eligible to serve as nominators or endorsers.
Timeline: Nominations for the 2020 award are due December 9, 2019.
APS Prizes, Awards, and Dissertation Awards:
APS prizes & awards recognize outstanding achievements in research, education and public service. With few exceptions, they are open to all members of the scientific community in the U.S. and abroad. The nomination and selection procedure, involving APS-appointed selection committees, guarantees their high standards and prestige.
Fellowship is a distinct honor signifying recognition by one's professional peers. Any APS member in good standing as of January 1 of the preceding year is eligible for nomination and election to Fellowship. The criterion for election is exceptional contributions to the physics enterprise; e.g., outstanding physics research, important applications of physics, leadership in or service to physics, or significant contributions to physics education.
The Association for Computing Machinery's most prestigious technical award (sometimes referred to as the 'Nobel Prize of Computing') is given for major contributions of lasting importance to computing.
Nominations: Online submission including two reference letters.
Timeline: Nominations may be submitted any time. Next deadline January 15, 2020
The Bower Award and Prize for Achievement in Science is presented through the Franklin Institute for outstanding achievement in a different, predetermined field of interest each year. As stipulated by the will of Henry Bower, this award includes a $250,000 cash prize. Nominations for the Bower Award and Prize for Achievement in Science are accepted through May of the year prior to the award presentation.
The theme of the 2020 Bower Award and Prize for Achievement in Science is Neural Networks for Machine Learning.
Nominations: Email of intent to nominate due April 30, 2019. Four confidential letters of support and nomination materials due via email on May 31, 2019.
Timeline: Annual award, announced in February, due in May.
The Dreyfus Prize in the Chemical Sciences is awarded to an individual in a selected area of chemistry to recognize exceptional and original research that has advanced the field in a major way. The prize is awarded biennially and consists of a monetary award of $250,000, a medal, and a certificate.
Nominations: Any person may nominate a candidate for the Dreyfus Prize. Self-nominations are not accepted.
2021 Topic TBA Fall 2020
Timeline: Early 2021
The Academy's most distinctive feature is its membership of over 850 Fellows. These Fellows are public managers and scholars, business executives and labor leaders, current and former cabinet officers, members of Congress, governors, mayors, state legislators, and diplomats. Individually, Fellows provide unparalleled insight and experience. Collectively, they are the Academy's primary vehicle for addressing current and emerging issues and contributing to the intellectual and popular discourse on government.
Nominations: Fellows elect new members of the Academy each year.
Cornell Recipients | Fellows
The goal of the Ford Foundation Senior Fellowship award is to provide funding for selected Ford Fellows to conduct innovative research that addresses the overall goals and mission of moving the Ford Foundation forward.
Applications: Self nomination. The Ford Foundation Senior Fellowship award is open to individuals who have previously held a Ford Foundation Predoctoral, Dissertation, or Postdoctoral Fellowship and currently hold a faculty appointment at an accredited U.S. academic institution. Applicants must have held the Ph.D./Sc.D. for at least seven years at the time of application.
Timeline: The application module for the Ford Senior Fellowship opens on approximately November 1 close on January 31. Awards are 12 months of tenure.
Awarded every four years on the occasion of the International Congress of Mathematicians to recognize outstanding mathematical achievement for existing work and for the promise of future achievement. Regarded as one of the highest honors a mathematician can receive and has been described as the mathematician's "Nobel Prize".
Nominations: Nominations are emailed to the prize committee chairs. Nominations are confidential, and must not be disclosed to the candidate. Self-nominations are strongly discouraged. The Fields Medal is awarded to an individual mathematician whose 40th birthday must not occur before January 1st of the year of the ICM at which the Fields Medals are awarded.
Cornell Recipients | Fields Medal
Fellowship program engages the American academic science, technology, engineering and medical communities in the design and implementation of U.S. foreign policy and international development.
Jefferson Science Fellows spend one year on assignment at the U.S. Department of State or the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) as science advisors on foreign policy/international development issues. Assignments are tailored to the needs of the hosting office, while taking into account the Fellows' interests and areas of expertise.
Applications: Click the link below to view eligibility criteria, terms of the fellowship and instructions for applying
Timeline: The application period opens in early August and closes on October 31.
Nonprofit, non-governmental organization in the United States that advances high-quality research to improve education policy and practice.
Members and foreign associates are elected based on the outstanding scholarship related to education and provide pro-bono service on committees that address pressing issues in education. In addition, Academy members and other scholars are also deeply engaged in NAE professional development programs focused on preparing the next generation of education researchers.
Nominations: The National Academy of Education accepts membership nominations annually. Only current members are eligible to submit nominations.
Cornell Recipients | National Academy of Education
Election to National Academy of Engineering membership is one of the highest professional honors accorded an engineer. Members have distinguished themselves in business and academic management, in technical positions, as university faculty, and as leaders in government and private engineering organizations.
Nominations: Nominations may be submitted by anyone, but self-nominations are not allowed. Members are elected to NAE membership by their peers (current NAE members).
Cornell Recipients | National Academy of Engineering
Election to NAI Fellow status is the highest professional distinction accorded to academic inventors who have created or facilitated outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development, and the welfare of society. The National Academy of Inventors currently has 912 Fellows worldwide representing more than 250 prestigious universities and governmental and nonprofit research institutes.
Nominations: Self-nominations are not permitted; nominations open in April and are submitted by current NAI Fellows, due on July 31 each year.
Cornell Recipients | National Academy of Inventors
The National Academy of Medicine (NAM), established in 1970 under the name Institute of Medicine (IOM), is an independent organization of eminent professionals from diverse fields including health and medicine; the natural, social, and behavioral sciences; and beyond. Through its domestic and global initiatives, the NAM works to address critical issues in health, medicine, and related policy and inspire positive action across sectors.
Nominations: The election of individuals to the National Academy of Medicine starts with a confidential nomination by two NAM members who are well versed with the candidate's work. In sponsoring the nomination, the NAM member affirms his or her personal assessment that the candidate meets the NAM's primary criterion of excellence and outstanding professional achievement in a field relevant to the mission of the NAM. Each year, up to 70 regular members and 10 international members are elected to the NAM by the regular membership body at large. Once elected, members are also eligible for a number of awards, described here: https://nam.edu/about-the-nam/#ert_pane1-1
Cornell Recipients | National Academy of Medicine
Members are elected to the National Academy of Sciences in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. Membership is a widely accepted mark of excellence in science and is considered one of the highest honors that a scientist can receive. Current NAS membership totals approximately 2,380 members and nearly 485 foreign associates, of whom approximately 190 have received Nobel prizes.
Nominations: Membership is achieved by election after a formal application process. Self-nomination is not allowed. Consideration of a candidate begins with his or her nomination, followed by an extensive and careful vetting process that results in a final ballot at the Academy's annual meeting in April each year.
2020 Awards nominations are due October 7, 2019: http://www.nasonline.org/programs/awards/2020.html
Cornell Recipients | Awards Listed by Field
The National Medal of Science is the Nation's highest honor for American scientists and engineers.
The Medal is awarded to individuals deserving of special recognition by reason of their understanding cumulative contributions to knowledge in the chemical, physical, biological, mathematical, engineering, or behavioral or social sciences, in combination with exemplary service to the Nation. Ideal nominations make a strong case for scientific or engineering achievement as well as broader impacts in promoting the progress of science; advancing the national health, prosperity, and welfare; securing the national defense; and other purposes.
Nominations: There is no limit to the number of nominations by an institution. Self-nominations are not eligible, nor are nominations from immediate family members. Teams are not eligible for consideration. Nominations will be carried over for a period of three years, including the year of nomination. After that time, it is possible to re-nominate the candidate for later consideration, if he or she is still eligible.
Cornell Recipients | Nominate Colleague
The medal is awarded annually to individuals, teams (up to four individuals), companies or divisions of companies for their outstanding contributions to America's economic, environmental and social well-being. The purpose of the National Medal of Technology and Innovation is to recognize those who have made lasting contributions to America's competitiveness, standard of living, and quality of life through technological innovation, and to recognize those who have made substantial contributions to strengthening the nation's technological workforce.
Nominations: Open to U.S. Citizens only. Anyone can be a nominator. One will need to complete online nomination form and include 3-6 letters of support. Nomination window opens in January and closes in April.
Providing the nation's most promising early-career scientists and engineers with flexible funding and the freedom to take risks and explore new frontiers in their fields of study
Nominations: Up to two nominations may be made by the president of each institution. Candidates must be faculty members in the first three years of their faculty careers.
Timeline: Nominations are requested in January of each year from the presidents of 50 universities selected by the Advisory Panel. Nominations due in March.
The Sackler Prizes are intended to promote originality and excellence of research in the field of Biophysics, Chemistry and Physics. They are administered by Tel Aviv University through an advisory committee comprised of the President and Rector of TAU as ex-officio members and others selected ad personam by the President and the Rector.
Nominations: Up to two nominations may be made by the president of each institution. Candidates must be faculty members in the first three years of their faculty careers.
Cornell Recipients | Raymond and Beverly Sackler Prizes