APS Prize For Young Particle Theorists

By Sean Carroll | July 25, 2011 12:07 pm

The Division of Particles and Fields of the American Physical Society, wisely realizing that the future belongs to the young, has instituted a new prize for the best Ph.D. dissertation in theoretical particle physics. It’s brand new, so we’re helping to spread the word. Official notice below.

Note that this is not because particle theorists are especially prizeworthy; this new award joins a host of other dissertation prizes in other subfields of physics. Advisors everywhere, take note!

Message to members of the American Physical Society’s DPF, Authorized by Alice Bean, Secretary/Treasurer of DPF
Dissertation Award in Theoretical Particle Physics

Starting this year, the Division of Particles and Fields has established a Dissertation Award in Theoretical Particle Physics. The Award recognizes exceptional young scientists who have performed original doctoral thesis work of outstanding scientific quality and achievement in the area of theoretical particle physics. The annual Award consists of $1,500, a certificate citing the accomplishments of the recipient, and an allowance of up to $1,000 for travel to attend a meeting of the DPF or APS, where the Award will be presented.

Nominations will be accepted for any doctoral student studying at a college or university in the United States or in an education abroad program of a college or university in the United States for dissertation research carried out in the field of theoretical particle physics. The work to be considered must have been completed as part of the requirements for a doctoral degree. Nominees for the 2012 Award must have passed their thesis defense between September 16, 2010 and September 15, 2011.

The deadline for submission of nominations for the 2012 prize is October 1, 2011. For detailed guidelines and to submit a nomination, see


  • Sili

    And once again I feel old …

  • Farhad

    That’s great news. I know when I was a member, the only APS prizes and praises went to the established top physicists who did not really need any more recognition. But the younger particle physicists who did need recognition never received it. The experimental physics side was even worse. The names of the young experimentalists got buried in a long list of names associated with all papers coming out of a collaboration.

  • Anon

    Where does it say anything about age? Are older/non-traditional doctoral students not elegible?

  • piscator

    @Farhad: Not so fast. I have no horse in this particular race, but there is a bit of a tradition of esteem indicators for junior physicists (plenary talks/prestigious fellowships…) going to, not the `established top physicists who did not really need any more recognition’, but their students! Sometimes this is justified (good advisors attract good students) and sometimes less so (empire-building).

  • Phil
  • Viper


    This link couldn’t be further from the topic of the post, though it does look interesting. I watched the first 10 minutes of it.

  • Phil

    Viper, yes it’s a very interesting talk in which the speaker argues for why the Gospels were based on eyewitness accounts based on the use of statistics, among other things.

    Sean, please watch that video and report what you think about it. Thanks!


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About Sean Carroll

Sean Carroll is a Senior Research Associate in the Department of Physics at the California Institute of Technology. His research interests include theoretical aspects of cosmology, field theory, and gravitation. His most recent book is The Particle at the End of the Universe, about the Large Hadron Collider and the search for the Higgs boson. Here are some of his favorite blog posts, home page, and email: carroll [at] cosmicvariance.com .


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