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Philip Hauge Abelson Prize

The American Association for the Advancement of Science invites nominations for the 2025 AAAS Philip Hauge Abelson Prize. The prize was established in 1985 by the AAAS Board of Directors. A monetary prize of $5,000, a commemorative plaque, complimentary registration to the AAAS Annual Meeting, a complimentary one-year AAAS membership, and reimbursement for reasonable travel expenses to attend the AAAS Annual Meeting to receive the prize are given to the recipient. The Prize will be presented at the 2023 AAAS Annual Meeting.


The Philip Hauge Abelson Prize was established to be awarded to someone who has made significant contributions to the scientific community — whether through research, policy, and/or civil service — in the United States. The awardee could be a public servant, scientist, or an individual in any field who has made sustained, exceptional contributions and other notable services to the scientific community.

Nomination Procedures

On the nomination web portal, you will be asked to provide the following:

  • The nominee’s name, title, institution, email address, mailing address, and phone number.
  • Your name, title, institution, email address, mailing address, and phone number.
  • A short biography of the candidate.
  • A statement (no more than three pages) providing the rationale for the nomination.
  • At least one letter of recommendation (up to two letters) expressing support for the nominee that addresses why the nominee is deserving of the prize.
  • The candidate’s curriculum vitae or resume (no more than three pages).
  • AAAS membership status (member, non-member, or unknown).
  • Voluntary demographic information.


  • Nominations may be made by individuals, universities, government agencies, research organizations, and AAAS affiliate organizations.
  • According to AAAS award policy, self-nominations are allowed.
  • Prior nomination does not exclude a candidate from consideration in subsequent years; however it should be resubmitted to reflect any updates to the candidates CV and letters of recommendations.

Advice for nominations:

The pool of nominations for the Abelson prize includes many exceptional people. Nominations are most successful when they effectively describe the aspects of the nominee’s work and career that differentiate the nominee from others who have held similar positions of leadership. Please articulate both the specific achievements and the service to the scientific community—whether through research, policy, and/or civil service -- that distinguish the nominee, giving careful attention to the context and details demonstrating “significant” and “exceptional” contributions.

All materials become the property of AAAS.


Please submit all information to the awards nomination site.


Nominations for the 2025 Abelson Prize will be open from April 15 - June 30, 2024.

Past Recipients

The 2023 recipient of the Abelson Prize is Sekazi Kauze Mtingwa, who was recognized for his exceptional contributions to the scientific community, research workforce, and society, which have shaped research, public policy, and the next generation of scientific leaders.

List of past recipients

AAAS Awards

Each year, AAAS recognizes significant contributions to science and the public’s understanding of science. Learn more about these awards and nominate a scientist, engineer, author, journalist or public servant for their outstanding work.

Diversity & Ethics 

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is committed to equal opportunity for all persons, without regard to race, color, religion, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or other protected categories. AAAS seeks as diverse a pool of award nominations as possible, including as well a wide range of disciplines, institutional types, and geographical locations.

All award winners are expected to meet the commonly held standards of professional ethics* and scientific integrity.

*Breaches of professional ethics might include sexual misconduct, racial discrimination, or other ethical violations. Sexual harassment or retaliation for declining, objecting to, or reporting harassment or other sexual conduct may constitute a serious breach of professional ethics.