The President's Medal was instituted in 1985 to acknowledge and encourage the contributions of the next generation of experimental biologist researchers. In more recent years, the criteria have been broadened to encompass researchers in the early to mid stages of their careers, irrespective of age. This inclusive approach recognises diverse career trajectories, accommodating individuals who have navigated career transitions and breaks. The President's Medal is now an annual accolade for those within the first ten years post-graduation from their highest degree level.


Overview Overview

The SEB President's Medals are awarded annually to three young scientists of outstanding merit, one per section of the Society (Animal; Cell; Plant). Winners are invited to speak at the SEB Annual Conference.

To nominate someone for a President's Medal, fill out the short form below, giving the name and email address of your nominee. The SEB will then contact your nominee and request they fill out a form with additional details that will be used in the judging process.

You do not need to be an SEB member to nominate someone for the award and can put forward as many nominations as you like, however, we do not accept any self-nominations. 

Nominees do not have to have to be a member of SEB at the time of nomination; however, if successful, they must be a member of SEB at the time of accepting the award. They must also be available to give a talk at the SEB annual conference. To help support all winners of SEB awards in accepting their prizes, we provide the following support: 

  • We provide affordable childcare at our annual conference from as little as £10 per half-day
  • We have two travel grants which provide help with travel and accommodation costs at the conference
  • Although in-person talks are preferable, we do have hybrid options available for anyone who will struggle to travel to the conference
  • We have an SEB hardship fund available which can provide support on membership renewal costs in time of financial hardship
Date Action
July Nominations open
Last Friday of September Nominations close
July/early October Nominees are contacted after nomination and asked to fill out a form
Late November/ early December SEB President to inform the medallist and runners-up of their successes


Scroll down to see the nomination form, which will be available in July-September.

Eligibility Criteria Eligibility Criteria

Nominees must meet certain requirements to be considered for judging. These are: 

  • Time from PhD, normally no longer than 10 years* 
  • Nominees must agree to the SEB code of conduct and have no confirmed or potential impediment to their professional standing
  • Nominees must be within the scientific remit of the SEB (animal plant cell)
  • Nominations will only be considered that conform to the application guidelines as applications will be judged solely on the nomination form 

* If a nominee falls outside of this time frame, the judging panel will still consider the application provided there is a justifiable reason. For example if they have taken a career break, followed a non-traditional career path, are in part-time employment etc.  Please make a note of this on the nomination form. 


Judging Criteria Judging Criteria

The SEB Presidents Medal has been given to “scientists of outstanding merit” who have “demonstrated excellence” in their field. Our definition of excellence includes all areas of a diverse and modern scientific landscape. 

Judging is based on the following criteria:

  • Scientific Excellence
  • Scientific Impact
  • Emerging leadership skills within the scientific community
  • Contributions to the SEB 
  • Outreach and advocacy for experimental biology
  • Personal Character/Professional Standing

If a situation arises where multiple nominees are judged by these criteria to have equal merit, the judging panel may also use information provided on the application form to consider the nominees’ broader contribution to the experimental biology community.

Examples of relevant contributions could include, but are not limited to:

  • Quality of publications and/or patents and/or software
  • Independence
  • Collaborations and teamwork
  • Teaching/demonstrating
  • Service on boards, committees or panels
  • Peer-reviewer
  • Other indicators of esteem indicated on the application form

Winners will be invited to speak at the SEB Annual Conference. If an in-person talk is not possible the SEB will do our best to accommodate this through hybrid and virtual routes. However, if no arrangement can be made, another finalist may be offered the Presidents Medal.

Who are the Judging Panels? Who are the Judging Panels?

The judging panel is made up of the relevant scientific section committee depending on the application. The SEB has three scientific sections; Animal, Plant and Cell which are assembled of the Section Chair, Convenors of the sections interest groups, and a  co-opted member.

Judging Process Judging Process

  1. A nominator fills out a short form listing the name and email address of the nominee along with a short 1-2 sentence statement on why they have selected the nominee
  2. The SEB will email the nominee informing them of the nomination and providing a link to an application form 
  3. The nominee will fill out this form containing 6 questions that are guided by the judging criteria 
  4. The judging panel will receive all completed forms and judge them based on a scoring system against the afore mentioned criteria
  5. The top three finalists will be notified by email and congratulated on their shortlisting. We may ask if we can use their name in any award publicity
  6. The top finalists (up to three) including the winner are ratified at a meeting with of the SEB Section Chairs, President and Vice President. If no final decision could be made by the judging panel, this group will have the power to decide the final winner between the top 2 candidates at this stage. 
  7. The winner is informed and invited to speak at the SEB Annual Conference 

Considerations of the Judging Panel Considerations of the Judging Panel

To help nominees submit an application with the best chance of success, we have outlined the primary judging criteria and examples of what the judges may consider as demonstrations these have been met in the table below.

Nominees may not meet every consideration of the judges; these examples should be used as a guide and you do not need to answer every question outlined. Equally, the list is not extensive so please include anything you feel is important for the judges to consider even if it is not included in these examples.

Criteria Examples of questions the judges may ask or aspects for consideration 
Scientific excellent   Does their research solve an outstanding problem in the field?
Is their research innovative and generate new ideas? 
Did they develop a novel experimental method that will further aid the scientific community? 
Have they made an original and outstanding scientific contribution? 
Is there evidence of this for example from published papers, typescripts of papers accepted for publication, or pre-prints 
Scientific impact Has their work lead to new research areas? 
What impact has their research made/ or is expected to make in their field? 
Is there evidence of this for example from impact factors or 
Has their work lead to an advancement outside of their research scope or topic? 
Has their work been used outside of their daily research, for example contributions to textbooks etc?
*”Scientific Impact” refers to the eventual impact of fundamental research as well as direct impact of applied work
Emerging leadership skills within the scientific community  Have they demonstrated an ability to lead and/or encourage students and/or colleagues? 
Have they organised a symposium or chaired a session for example at an SEB event or similar? 
Do they have a track record of attracting new audiences to experimental biology or research? 
Outreach and advocacy for experimental biology Have they made an impact in their wider community? 
Do they promote their work or experimental biology in scientific outreach efforts to the public, youth, or disengaged groups of society?
Do they contribute to greater scientific understanding of the general population through engagement with media? 
Is there evidence of this in outreach work, press releases, media appearances, etc?
Are they active in scientific policy or advisory groups?
Do they help to improve diversity and inclusion in their field?
Contributions to the SEB Are they a member of the SEB? 
What is the length of their membership and engagement with the SEB? 
Have they made a significant contribution to the SEB either over a long period of sustained engagement, or an intensive short period of action? 
Have they presented at previous SEB events such as the Annual Conference? 
Have they contributed content for the SEB website or magazine
Have they actively promoted the SEB in anyway i.e. social media, posters in department ? 
Have they organised a symposium or chaired a session at an SEB event? 
Have they published in an SEB journal?  
Personal Character/professional Standing Do they comply with the SEB professional code of conduct?
Are they an upstanding member of the scientific community and a good role model to colleagues?  
*We ask nominators and nominees to declare that to the best of their knowledge there is no confirmed or potential impediment to their nominee winning from the point of view of that individual’s professional standing


Equality and Inclusion Equality and Inclusion

The SEB has a continued commitment to ensure equality, inclusion, and diversity in all our activities. This includes recognising and rewarding scientists of outstanding merit from all backgrounds. To achieve this we have: 

  • Made the nomination process easier to encourage more first-time nominators and expand the pool of nominees at the judging stage
  • Made the judging process and criteria more transparent to allow nominators and nominees to submit applications that have the best chance of success 
  • Continued to encourage and normalise non-traditional career paths by allowing flexibility in the eligibility criteria regarding career stage and committed to highlight role models from diverse backgrounds and career routes. 
  • Actively encouraged nominators to consider diversity this on the nomination form and in any promotional material surrounding the awards
  • Committed to proactively engage with other organisations, institutes, and societies in an effort to increase nominations from underrepresented groups


Nominate someone for a President's Medal 

The nomination form will be available during the nomination period: from July to September.




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