The Stephen Jay Gould Prize

The Stephen Jay Gould Prize is awarded annually by the Society for the Study of Evolution to recognize individuals whose sustained and exemplary efforts have advanced public understanding of evolutionary science and its importance in biology, education, and everyday life in the spirit of Stephen Jay Gould. Nominations open in the fall and close January 15. This award will not be offered in 2018.

The SSE Education Committee is pleased to announce the winner of the 2017 Stephen Jay Gould Prize: Dr. Timothy R. Birkhead. Dr. Birkhead is Professor of Behavior and Evolution at the University of Sheffield and has made major contributions to understanding how animal behavior evolves under environmental pressures and in response to competition. Dr. Birkhead has had a distinguished career both advancing the science of evolution and in conveying that knowledge to the general public. Dr. Birkhead has promoted evolution through his extremely successful popular science books that include Promiscuity: An Evolutionary History of Sperm Competition (2000), The Red Canary(2003), The Wisdom of Birds (2008), Bird Sense (2012), Ten Thousand Birds: Ornithology Since Darwin (2014), and The Most Perfect Think: The inside (and Outside) of a Birds Egg (2016), as well as through many popular science articles.  Congratulations!


The 2017 Stephen Jay Gould Prize Committee:

Michael Anatolin (chair)
Joe Graves
Kelly Dyer
Kristi Montooth


Stephen J. Gould Prize recipients and presentations:

2016, Carl Zimmer |
2013, Judith G. Scotchmoor |
2010, Dr. Sean B. Carroll |
2015, Francisco Ayala |
2012, David Quammen |
2009, Dr. Eugenie C. Scott |
2014, Dr. Steve Jones |
2011, Dr. Kenneth R. Miller |


Nomination/Application for the 2017 Stephen J. Gould Prize are open September 1, 2016 through January 15, 2017

The Society for the Study of Evolution’s Committee for the Stephen J. Gould Prize for the Improvement of the Understanding of Evolution is soliciting nominations for the Award for 2017. With this annual award the Society for the Study of Evolution recognizes, promotes, and rewards individuals who have increased public understanding of evolutionary biology and its place in modern science. The award will include a cash prize of $5,000 and the expectation that the recipient will present the Public Outreach Seminar at the Annual Meeting of the Society for the Study of Evolution (expenses for travel/lodging and registration would be covered by the SSE). The awardee should be a leader in evolutionary thought and in public outreach who can deliver an inspiring lecture for both professionals and the broader public at the 2017 meetings of the Society in Portland, Oregon.

Nominations should include the CV of the nominee along with a 1-2 page letter describing why this individual is worthy of the award.

Please send nominations via e-mail to the Chair of the Committee, Louise Mead, at Please submit nominees by January 15, 2017. All nominations will be treated confidentially and will be evaluated by members of the Committee and the Council for the Society. An awardee will be announced in mid-February.

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