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Each year, the Society makes a number of awards, mainly in the field of science.  They are among the oldest and most prestigious awards in Australia and  are summarised below.  Full details for each award, including the procedure for nomination, may be found by clicking on the links below or on the relevant award name in the drop-down menu under the Awards menu.  A nominator does not need to be a member or fellow of the Society. 

Nominations for all awards close on 30 September of each year.

Archibald Ollé Prize

The Archibald Ollé Prize of $500 is given from time to time, at the discretion of the Council, to the to the author who has submitted and had accepted the best single-author paper to the Society’s Journal.

The Clarke Medal

The Clarke Medal is awarded each year for distinguished research in the natural sciences conducted in the Australian Commonwealth and its territories. The recipient may be resident in Australia or elsewhere. The fields of geology, botany and zoology are considered in rotation.

For 2022, the medal will be awarded in Geology

Clarke Memorial Lecture

The Clarke Memorial Lecture is delivered each year by the most recent winner of the Clarke Medal.

Edgeworth David Medal

The Edgeworth David Medal is awarded each year for distinguished contributions by a young scientist under the age of thirty-five (35) years on 1 January in the year in which the medal is awarded, for work done mainly in Australia or its territories, or contributing to the advancement of Australian science.

History and Philosophy of Science Medal

The Society’s History and Philosophy of Science Medal is awarded each year to recognise outstanding achievement in the History and Philosophy of Science with preference being given to the study of ideas, institutions, and individuals of significance to the practice of the natural sciences in Australia.

James Cook Medal

The James Cook Medal is awarded periodically for outstanding contributions to both science and human welfare in and for the Southern Hemisphere.

Liversidge Lecture

The Liversidge lectureship is awarded biennially for research in chemistry.  The lecture is presented in conjunction with the Royal Australian Chemical Institute (RACI).  The lecture will be published in the Journal and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New South Wales.

Poggendorff Lectureship

The Poggendorff Lectureship is awarded every two to three years for research in plant biology and, more broadly, agriculture. Nominations will next be sought in 2024.

Pollock Memorial Lectureship

The Pollock Memorial Lectureship has been awarded approximately every four years since 1949 and is sponsored by the University of Sydney and the Society in memory of Professor J.A. Pollock, Professor of Physics at the University of Sydney (1899-1922) and a member of the Society for 35 years. Nominations will next be sought in 2025.

The Royal Society of New South Wales Citation

The Royal Society of New South Wales Citation is awarded to a Member or Fellow of the Society who has made significant contributions to the Society, but who has not been recognised in any other way. The Awards Committee considers nominations made by a Member or Fellow. A maximum of three Citations may be awarded in any one year.

The Royal Society of New South Wales Medal

The Society's Medal is awarded from time to time to a member of the Society who has made meritorious contributions to the advancement of science, including administration and organisation of scientific endeavour and for services to the Society.

The Royal Society of New South Wales Scholarships

Three scholarships of $500 plus a complimentary year of Associate Membership of the Society are awarded each year in order to acknowledge outstanding achievements by young researchers in any field of science in New South Wales. Applicants must be enrolled in their first higher degree as research students in their first or second year, in a university or at CSIRO in either NSW or the ACT (on 1 January of the year of nomination) and have completed an undergraduate degree within NSW or the ACT.

Walter Burfitt Prize

The Walter Burfitt Prize consists of a bronze medal, awarded every three years for research in pure or applied science, deemed to be of the highest scientific merit.  The winner must be a resident in Australia or New Zealand.  The papers and other contributions must have been published during the previous six years for research conducted mainly in these countries.  Nominations for the Walter Burfitt prize will next be sought in 2022.

Warren Prize

The Warren Prize is awarded to recognise research of national or international significance by early- or mid-career engineers and technologists. The research must have originated or have been carried out principally in New South Wales.


These prestigious awards for excellence in science, engineering, philosophy and the arts, awarded by Australia's oldest learned society, recognise outstanding achievements.

Nominations for the 2022 Awards have now closed.  The winners of these awards will be announced at the Society's Ordinary General Meeting to be held on 7 December 2022. 

Information about the Awards, instructions for making nominations, and links to the nomination forms can be obtained by clicking on the Award name in the drop-down list under the “Awards” menu.

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