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Guidelines for IAVCEI Awards

The Awards and their frequency

  • The Thorarinsson Medal is awarded once every 4 years at the IAVCEI Scientific Assembly.
    The Thorarinsson Medal honors the memory of Professor Sigurdur Thorarinsson who was born on January 8, 1912, in Vopnafjordur, eastern Iceland, and died in Reykjavik on February 8, 1983. Professor Thorarinsson is known for his pioneering work in volcanology, especially tephrochronology of Iceland. The medal was donated by the Iceland Geoscience Society. The medal is the most senior medal of IAVCEI. It is given every 4 years at the IAVCEI Scientific Assembly to a scientist of outstanding distinction who has made fundamental contributions to research in volcanology.
  • The Krafft Medal is awarded every 4 years at the IAVCEI Scientific Assembly.
    The Krafft Medal honors the memory of Katia Krafft (1942-1991) and Maurice Krafft (1946-1991) who were killed while photographing a pyroclastic flow on Mount Unzen, Japan in 1991. The Kraffts were pioneers in filming, photographing and recording volcanoes. The medal is co-sponsored by the Krafft family through the trust fund “Volcan et Images”. The Krafft Medal is awarded every 4 years at the IAVCEI Scientific Assembly to an individual who has made outstanding contributions to volcanology through service to the scientific community or to communities threatened by volcanic activity. The Krafft Medal honors those who have shown altruism and dedication to the humanitarian and applied sides of volcanology and those who have made selfless contributions to the volcanological community.
  • The Wager Medal is awarded every 2 years at both the IAVCEI Scientific Assembly and at the IAVCEI General Assembly (=IUGG GA).
    The Wager Medal honors the memory of Professor Lawrence Rickard Wager of the University of Oxford, United Kingdom, who was born in 1904 and died in 1965. Professor Wager is best known for the discovery of the Skaergaard layered intrusion and the first detailed structural, mineralogical and petrological study of such intrusions. The medal is given every 2 years (i.e. at both Scientific and General Assemblies) to a scientist up to 15 years after Ph.D acquisition*, who has made outstanding contributions to volcanology, particularly in the eight-year period prior to the Award.
    *Accomodations for extenuating circumstances like maternal/paternal leave can be requested and are described below under nomination procedure
  • The George Walker Award is awarded every 2 years at both the IAVCEI Scientific Assembly and at the IAVCEI General Assembly (=IUGG GA).
    The George Walker Award honor the memory of Professor George Walker, who was born on March 2, 1926 and died on January 17, 2005. Professor Walker’s discoveries pioneered a modern quantitative approach to physical volcanology and greatly accelerated understanding of volcanic processes. The award is supported by the George Walker Fund. The award is given every 2 years (i.e. at both Scientific and General Assemblies) to a scientist up to 7 years after Ph.D acquisition*. The award recognizes achievements of a recent outstanding graduate in the fields of research encompassed by IAVCEI, or also a recent graduate whose achievements in volcanology involved operating in difficult circumstances. The winner will receive a certificate with a cash award. Please note that at 2019 IUGG three prizes will be awarded.
    *Accomodations for extenuating circumstances like maternal/paternal leave can be requested and are described below under nomination procedure
  • The Fisher medal honors the memory of Professor Richard V. Fisher of the University of California Santa Barbara, who was born on August 8, 1928, in Whittier, California, and died on June 8, 2002, in Santa Barbara, California.  Professor Fisher is known for his pioneering work on pyroclastic density currents.  He developed models for transport and deposition based upon very carefully described stratigraphic sections and sedimentological properties of the deposits.  His models were always based firmly upon his field work.  The medal is given every 4 years at the IAVCEI Scientific Assembly to a scientist who has made outstanding contributions to volcanology based primarily upon field observations.
  • Volcanic surveillance and crisis management Award honors the personnel from institutions or organisations responsible for monitoring volcanoes (volcano observatories and/or other institutions) that have made a remarkable contribution to the mitigation of volcanic hazards and volcanic risks. Volcano monitoring, eruption forecasting and the mitigation of volcanic hazards are key objectives of volcanologists and a duty of volcano observatories worldwide. Criteria for eligibility include: successful hazard assessment and mitigation efforts, and/or effective volcano surveillance and eruption forecasting and/or effective crisis management. This award will be presented every 2 years at the Cities on Volcanoes conference.
  • Life membership is awarded to up to 3 IAVCEI members in recognition for services to IAVCEI and volcanology, every 4 years at the IAVCEI Scientific Assembly.

The Awards Committee

  • The President of IAVCEI presides over the Awards Committee, but only has an equal say as all other members of the committee.
  • The Awards Committee is selected by the President, using the following guidelines.
    • The Awards Committee will consist of 4 to 6 members in addition to the President.
    • Members will be respected members of IAVCEI with a record of distinguished research.
    • The Awards Committee will have gender balance, geographical region/cultural representation balance, and discipline balance.
    • All members of the Awards Committee must be IAVCEI members.
    • If possible at least one of the Awards Committee should be a previous IAVCEI Award winner.

The nomination process

  • More than 6 months before the Awards Ceremony there will be a call for nominations for the relevant awards in IAVCEI NEWS and by email notification to all registered members.
  • Only members of IAVCEI can be nominated for IAVCEI Awards.
  • Only members of IAVCEI can nominate other members of IAVCEI for awards.
  • Each nomination must have one lead nominator, and no more than 3 supporting nominators.
  • Only nominators can provide letters of support for each nomination.
  • No more than 2 nominators can be from the same country.
  • Candidates should provide an up to date CV.
  • The lead nominator should write a comprehensive case of no more than 3 pages long in support of the nomination.
  • The supporting nominators may provide supporting letters of no more than 2 pages long.
  • Each nomination should consist of a single pdf file of all the documents for the nomination.
  • All nominations are submitted to the President of IAVCEI at least 4 months before the awards ceremony.

For Awards involving a time limit, a maternity or a paternity leave (with documentation provided) can be added to the limit for the Award up to 18 months per child in the eligibility period.

For the George Walker and Wager medals, the time window taken into consideration for eligibility can be extended where maternity/paternity leave has been taken since award of PhD: For maternity, the time since the award of PhD can be increased by 18 months or, where longer, by the amount of leave actually taken for each child. For paternity, the time since the award of PhD can be increased by the amount of paternity leave actually taken for each child. The award committee understands that the extent and form of documentation of leave, especially paternity leave, will vary regionally. In such cases that documentation is problematic, the nomination letter should include any relevant information on how and for how long the nominees career was impacted.

The selection process

  • For each award, every member of the Awards Committee is required to read and consider all the documentation for each nominee.
  • Each committee member is required to submit a ranking list of the candidates for each award to the President from 1 for the top ranked candidate, then 2 for the next ranked candidate, etc.
  • The principal criterion should be the most accomplished researcher in their field of research, irrespective of their fields of research or the fields of research of the committee members. Committee members should not act as advocates for candidates from their own field of research.
  • The candidate with the lowest score will be the awardee for each award.
  • The committee has the discretion to award more than one award in any year. For example, because of the outstanding candidates vying for the mid-career Wager Medal, it has become common to award two Wager Medals in each round.
  • The President will compile the rankings from all committee members, including his/her own, for each award, and then circulate the spreadsheet to all members for final ratification.

Notification of Awards

  • The President should notify the successful nominees well before the awards ceremony to ensure they will be attending, with a request that the information be kept confidential until the awards ceremony, and that they present a < 3 minute acceptance speech.
  • The President will similarly contact the lead nominator of the awardees to request they attend the awards ceremony to present a < 3 minute citation, again with a request for confidentiality.