News Release

Submissions for the 2023 Eric and Wendy Schmidt Awards for Excellence in Science Communications are now open

Grant and Award Announcement

Hiltzik Strategies


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Credit: National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

WASHINGTON — Submissions are now being accepted for the 2023 Eric and Wendy Schmidt Awards for Excellence in Science Communications, given by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in partnership with Schmidt Futures.

This application cycle marks the second year of the Eric and Wendy Schmidt Awards for Excellence in Science Communications which honor top science communicators, journalists, and research scientists who have developed creative, original work to communicate issues and advances in science, engineering, and/or medicine for the general public.

These prestigious awards recognize excellent science communicators and strive to build a diverse community of science communicators, science journalists, and research scientists. Submissions are encouraged from individuals who have developed high-quality communications and demonstrated the potential or ability to communicate the spectrum of science, engineering, and/or medicine — issues and complexities, beauty and societal benefits, and shortcomings and controversies. This second cohort of winners will be supported as they continue to demystify complex issues related to science, engineering, and health effectively, helping society meet the challenges and realize opportunities posed by complex issues such as climate change, future pandemics, human genome editing, and artificial intelligence.

The program will confer 24 awards totaling $640,000. These awards go to individuals who were working at the front lines of science communication or journalism, with nine awards for research scientists, nine awards for science journalists, and, new to this year, six awards for science communicators. Schmidt Futures will additionally partner with journalists and renowned journalistic institutions to create ongoing training and professional development opportunities for the talented communicators recognized through the awards program.

“The quality and diversity of topics of last year’s submissions were remarkable, and the committee is looking forward to what this year has in store,” said Leah H. Jamieson, selection committee chair and Ransburg Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Dean Emerita of Engineering at Purdue University. “My hope is that this year’s submissions will bring forth a very diverse representation of all science, engineering, and medical fields to help all of us, and especially the public, face society’s most pressing challenges.”

“In a time when misinformation and disinformation have caused significant harm in our society, science communicators and science journalists offer the most important remedy — the truth,” said National Academy of Sciences President Marcia McNutt. “Effective and honest communication about science not only informs people but also empowers them to make sound decisions about their lives and their communities. We look forward to identifying and honoring talented individuals who are working hard to make science accessible to everyone.”

“Scientific discovery seems to move faster by the second, making the role of science communicators all the more critical," said Wendy Schmidt, who co-founded Schmidt Futures with her husband Eric. "Science communications makes it possible to work across disciplines, to help guide policymaking, and to share the benefits of discovery equitably and ethically. We are honored to join the National Academies in recognizing the skilled storytellers who help make it possible to improve human life today and for the future."

Recognizing and developing a wide pool of science communicators

The awards will be given to individuals who have developed creative, original work published or released in 2022 that explores issues and advances in science, engineering, and/or medicine for the general public in the following categories:

Nine Awards for Research Scientists will be split into three subcategories in science, engineering, or medical fields: graduate students (who were master’s or Ph.D. candidates), early-career researchers (who were zero-five years post-master’s or Ph.D.), and mid-to-later career researchers (who were six or more years post-master’s or Ph.D.).

Nine Awards for Science Journalists will focus on three subcategories in science journalism: community journalists (who reported on local and/or community-specific issues, or the effects of wider issues on a locality or community), early-career journalists (who were under 30 years of age, or had less than five years of professional experience), and freelance journalists (who were self-employed).

Six Awards for Science Communicators will focus on two other subcategories in science communication: independent communicators (who were self-employed) and organizational communicators (who were employed by an organization).

In each subcategory, there will be one top award at $40,000 and two awards of recognition at $20,000 each. In all, a total of $640,000 will be awarded.

Submissions will be accepted from April 4 until May 5, 2023. Leading scientists and experts in all aspects of science communication and journalism — from the academic, nonprofit, corporate, and other sectors — will review the nominations and select the winners. The winners will be announced in fall 2023. For more information, see

The Eric and Wendy Schmidt Awards for Excellence in Science Communications is supported by The Eric and Wendy Schmidt Fund for Strategic Innovation. Additional support is provided by the National Academy of Sciences W.K. Kellogg Foundation Fund and the Ralph J. and Carol M. Cicerone Endowment for NAS Missions.


About Schmidt Futures

Founded by Eric and Wendy Schmidt, Schmidt Futures is a philanthropic initiative that brings talented people together in networks to prove out their ideas and solve hard problems in science and society. To learn more about its method and the diverse types of capital and tools it deploys, visit


About the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine are private, nonprofit institutions that provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions related to science, engineering, and medicine. They operate under an 1863 congressional charter to the National Academy of Sciences, signed by President Lincoln.

Media Contacts:

Olivia Hamilton – Communications Specialist, NASEM, Office of News and Public Information, –

Janine Brady –  Managing Director, Communications, Schmidt Futures –

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