Award Committee Guidelines

These guidelines are recommended for all society award committees.

Committee Objectives

  • To examine, discuss and evaluate nominations. The primary evaluation criteria should be the qualifications of the candidate for the award, but additional evaluation criteria should include the history of past winners and whether the selected candidate will contribute to broadening the diversity of the award winners in terms of gender, region and/or topic.

  • Award committees may also consider whether a nominee has received previous honors from the Geochemical Society or the European Association of Geochemistry. In particular, this applies for the Goldschmidt (GS) and Urey (EAG) awards and the Clarke (GS) and Houtermans (EAG) awards, which are presented for similar accomplishments. Preference should be given to nominees who have not received the other award unless exceptional circumstances can be demonstrated.

  • To vote and recommend a candidate(s) for approval by the Board of Directors. (Hayes, Treibs, and Best Paper must also be approved by the OGD Executive Committee; Geochemistry Fellows must also be approved by the EAG Council)


Committee Members are prohibited from:

  • Award committee are prohibited from submitting nominations or writing supporting letters for an award they will be reviewing (although they are not prohibited from submitting nominations for other awards)

  • Award committee members are prohibited from receiving an award they will be reviewing.

  • GS Board of Directors are prohibited from receiving a GS award while they are serving.

  • OGD Executive Committee members are prohibited from receiving the Alfred Treibs, John Hayes, or Best Paper Awards while they are serving.

  • EAG Council members are prohibited from receiving the Geochemistry Fellows honor while they are serving.

Conflicts of Interest

Committee members are not eligible to vote on a nominee if there is a conflict of interest such as:

  • Being a member of the same institution or university as the nominee
  • Having been or being a dissertation supervisor or student of the nominee
  • Having close familial ties or a personal relationship with the nominee;
  • Other conflicts as determined by the Board of Directors

A member should notify the committee chair in case of a potential conflict and then abstain from discussion and voting (including initial rankings, if applicable) on the nominee(s) for which there is a conflict. The member may still participate in the consideration of other nominees.

The Chairperson's Responsibilities

The chairperson is responsible for making certain that no restrictions have been or will be violated. Further, the chair is responsible for distributing the nominations to the committee and for leading discussion, calling for committee vote and for submitting an annual report with the recommended candidate's information to the Board of Directors for examination and approval. The report submitted to the Board should, at the minimum, include a brief description of the number of nominations considered, the mechanism employed for reaching a decision (conference call, email only, voting - how done, how many rounds of voting to reach a decision), and a short paragraph describing why the person selected deserves the medal to be awarded.


The chairperson should work with the GS business office to arrange at least one meeting of the committee by phone or web meeting, at the society's expense. All committee deliberations should remain confidential.