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WALTER BOAS MEDAL for excellence in research

The Walter Boas Medal, which depicts Walter Boas in profile

The Walter Boas Medal was established in 1984 to promote excellence in research in Physics and to commemorate the life and work of Walter Moritz Boas, who was an AIP Honorary Fellow.

The Medal is awarded annually and presented at either the AIP Congress or the Summer Meeting, for original research that makes an important contribution to physics in Australia.

The Award consists of a medal and a certificate and one year membership of the AIP.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Nominee has not previously been the recipient of the Walter Boas Medal.
  • Physics research related to the award nomination must have been carried out in Australia in the last five years prior to the date of the award, as demonstrated by both published papers and unpublished papers prepared for publication.
  • The nominee, if successful, must be prepared to write an article related to the research, for which the award was presented, that will be published in Australian Physics; and present a keynote presentation at the next AIP Congress.
  • The nominee must be a member of the AIP or be nominated by a Proposer who is a member of the AIP; self-nomination by an AIP member is also acceptable. 

Nomination Process

Completion of the Boas Medal nomination form. This nomination form requires the nominee to provide:

  • three referees, at least one of whom must be external to the nominee’s place of work and must not be a co-author/collaborator, and who have the appropriate expertise to offer a critical appraisal of the nominee's achievements;
  • a one sentence citation capturing the nature of the work, as well as a longer citation (no more than 300 words) that summarises the nominee’s case for the award. This is to be written for a scientifically literate lay person. This will be used for promotion/certificates if the nominee is successful;
  • a brief curriculum vitae covering personal details, academic and professional qualifications, outlining professional career history, and honours and distinguished awards. A full CV is not necessary;
  • a list of the nominee’s ten most significant publications;
  • a short account (no longer than 4 pages) of the research achievements of the nominee (or nominees if there is a joint submission) setting out the achievements on which the application rests and drawing attention to those articles that are important;
  • a list of relevant publications, patents and reports by descriptive title and reference related to the achievements on which the application is based. Where heavy reliance is placed upon material not readily available, a copy of this material may also be submitted.

Assessment criteria

Excellence in original research supported by:
  • publications during the five years immediately preceding the date on which entries for the award close;
  • unpublished papers or reports on work carried out during the same period where appropriate;
  • work prior to this period If a nominee considers that knowledge of earlier work is necessary to support the nomination;
  • the impact, citations, and journals taking into consideration the norms for the field;
  • the nominee’s record of prestigious presentations featuring the research such as keynote, plenary, and invited talks;
  • patents and knowledge transfer activities that present the work to the wider community;
  • prestigious scientific leadership contributions such as service on panels and conference organisation.

Further Information

Nominations close: April 15 of the nomination year

Submissions should be emailed to

Previous Winners

  • 2023 Professor Mahananda Dasgupta and Emeritus Professor David Hinde, Australian National University
  • 2022 Professor Susan M Scott, Australian National University
  • 2021 Professor Howard M Wiseman, Griffith University
  • 2020 Professor Joss Bland-Hawthorn, University of Sydney
  • 2019 Professor Andrea Morello, UNSW Sydney

  • 2018 Professor Elisabetta L Barberio, University of Melbourne
  • 2017 Professor David E McClelland, Australian National University
  • 2016 Professor Geraint F Lewis, University of Sydney
  • 2015 Professor Min Gu,  Swinburne University of Technology
  • 2014 Professor Stuart Wyithe, University of Melbourne
  • 2013 Professor Chennupati Jagadish, Australian National University
  • 2012 Professor Lloyd CL Hollenberg, University of Melbourne
  • 2011 Professor Ben J Eggleton, University of Sydney
  • 2010 Professor Kostya Ostrikov, CSIRO
  • 2009 Professor Victor V Flambaum, University of New South Wales
  • 2008 Professor Peter D Drummond, Swinburne University of Technology
  • 2007 Associate Professor Derek Leinweber, University of Adelaide
  • 2006 Professor Michael Edmund Tobar, The University of Western Australia
  • 2005 Professor Yuri Kivshar, Australian National University
  • 2004 Professor George D Dracoulis, Australian National University
  • 2003 Professor Gerard J Milburn, University of Queensland
  • 2002 Professor Peter A Robinson, University of Sydney
  • 2001 Associate Professor Anthony G Williams, University of Adelaide
  • 2000 Professor Hans (H-A) Bachor, Australian National University
  • 1999 No award
  • 1998 Professor Robert G Clark, University of NSW
  • 1997 Professor Keith A Nugent, University of Melbourne
  • 1997 Dr Stephen W Wilkins, CSIRO
  • 1996 Professor Andris T Stelbovics, Murdoch University
  • 1996 Dr Igor Bray, Flinders University
  • 1995 Associate Professor David G Blair, University of Western Australia
  • 1994 No award
  • 1993 Professor Jim Williams, Australian National University
  • 1992 Professor Bruce HJ McKellar, University of Melbourne
  • 1991 Dr P Hariharan, CSIRO Division of Applied Physics
  • 1990 Professor Tony (AG) Klein, University of Melbourne
  • 1990 Professor Geoff (GI) Opat, University of Melbourne
  • 1989 Professor Jim (JF) Williams, University of Western Australia
  • 1988 Professor Robert Delbourgo, University of Tasmania
  • 1987 Professor Tony (AW) Thomas, University of Adelaide
  • 1986 Professor Donald B Melrose, Sydney University
  • 1985 Dr Peter Hannaford, CSIRO Division of Materials Technology
  • 1984 Professor Jim (JA) Piper, Macquarie University

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