Keith Runcorn Thesis Prize

Aurora Borealis - Iceland
Aurora Borealis, Iceland
Image by David Mark
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The Keith Runcorn Prize for the best doctoral thesis in geophysics (including planetary science and solar physics) is awarded annually.  The winner will receive a cash prize of £1,000 and an invitation to present the results of their thesis at an Ordinary (A&G) Meeting of the RAS. The prize is named after Keith Runcorn (1922-95). A separate Michael Penston Prize is awarded for theses in astronomy.

Subjects covered include:

  • Exploration geophysics
  • Physics of the Earth's atmosphere, ionosphere or magnetosphere
  • Planetary science
  • Solar physics
  • Solid-Earth geophysics

Nominees are not required to be Fellows of the RAS.

To be eligible, the thesis must have been:

  • Written on a topic in geophysics, as defined above.
  • Submitted to an accredited university in the United Kingdom for the degree of PhD, DPhil or equivalent.
  • Recommended for the award of a doctorate by the examiners i.e. while students do not need to have attended a graduation ceremony, they do need to have successfully defended their thesis in a viva and submitted final corrections which have been approved by their University.
  • Nominations must by received by 31 January in the year following the final approval of the thesis.

To nominate

Nominations should be submitted by 31 January for theses completed the previous year and should include:

  • An online completed Keith Runcorn Prize nomination form.
  • A nomination, written by the proposer, in the form of a citation (maximum length 500 words)
  • The abstract of the nominee’s thesis.
  • A complete list of publications.
  • Additionally, the proposer should give the names and emails of two referees familiar with the thesis (e.g. the examiners) who will be automatically contacted and asked to send supporting statements.

Fill out the application form online.