Past Awards (prior to 2023)

Awards imageThis page lists the Awards offered by the Society until the end of 2022, with a new program of Awards being implemented in 2023.

The new program may be accessed from this link.

 Announcements of Award winners in the years 2021 and 2022 may be found at the preceding links.

Archibald Ollé Prize

The Archibald Ollé Prize of $500 is given from time to time, at the discretion of the Council, 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.

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.

Jak Kelly Award

The Jak Kelly Award recognises excellence in postgraduate research in physics annually, with the winner selected from presenters at each year’s Australian Institute of Physics, NSW Branch Postgraduate Awards, as advised to the Awards Committee of the Royal Society of New South Wales. The award honours Jak Kelly (1928-2012), Professor and Head of Physics at the University of NSW (1985-1989), Honorary Professor at The University of Sydney (2004), and President of the Royal Society of NSW (2005-2006). It was first awarded in 2010.

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.

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.

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 is 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. 

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, technology, philosophy, and the arts, awarded by Australia's oldest learned society, recognise outstanding achievements. The Society's portfolio of awards has been entirely revamped in 2023 to provide greater breadth, to recognise recent and evolving disciplines, and emerging as well as established research stars.  Information about the new structure and portfolio of awards is provided on the main awards page

Winners of the 2023 awards will be announced at the 1318th Ordinary General Meeting of the Society to be held on 29 November 2023 and will be publish on the website shortly thereafter.

Winners of awards in previous years, and information about the awards program prior to 2023, may be found on the Past Awards page of this website.

Nominations for the 2024 Awards will open on 1 July 2024, with information about the new awards and how to apply available from the Awards menu on this website.

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