Victoria Prize criteria

The call for Nominations for the Victoria Prize for Science and Innovation in 2020 are NOW OPEN!

The Victoria Prize for Science and Innovation celebrates leadership, determination and creativity, highlighting the many ways in which research and development of international significance are conducted in Victoria.

Click here to download the Nomination Guide

Click here to find out how you can get started on your nomination

Click here for the Referee Report Guide





Nominations close at 5.00pm [AEST] on Monday, 15 June 2020 


Eligibility and nomination process

Candidates for the Victoria Prize must be nominated by an individual, a group of individuals or a professional association. Self-nominations will be excluded.

The field of endeavour may be in:

  • research (pure or applied); or
  • development (for example, implementation of research outcomes in an industrial setting).

Nominees should be active in research.

veski will deliver two Victoria Prizes for Science & Innovation in 2020 on behalf of the Victorian Government comprising:

  • one prize in the Life Sciences
  • one prize in the Physical Sciences.


Life Sciences

The Life Sciences category comprises the fields of science that involve the scientific study of living organisms and their life processes and ecosystems, covering fields such as biology, medicine or anthropology.

Physical Sciences

The Physical Sciences category encompasses the branches of science that study non-living systems, including but not limited to fields such as physics, chemistry, earth sciences, engineering, ICT, mathematics and statistics, or astronomy.


The Victoria Prize for Science and Innovation is typically awarded to an individual.

It is recognised, however, that outstanding achievement is often the result of long-term collaboration between individuals making equivalent and complementary contributions. The Prize, therefore, may be awarded to a maximum of two individuals in each category, if the outstanding achievement can be clearly shown to be the outcome of a long-term collaboration.

The total value of each Prize will remain at $50,000 and will be evenly apportioned between joint recipients.

Eligibility for the Victoria Prize for Science & Innovation is limited to Australian citizens or permanent residents who:

  • have been resident in Victoria for at least the three years prior to the closing date of the call for nominations (15 June 2020); and
  • have performed the major part of the work being acclaimed within Victoria.

Recipients of other professional, state, national or international awards are eligible for the Victoria Prize for Science & Innovation, providing they meet all eligibility criteria.


Assessment criteria and selection

All eligible nominations for the Victoria Prize for Science and Innovation will be considered by the selection panel.

The selection panel will be drawn from leading members of Victoria’s science, engineering and technology sectors. The panel may seek assistance from appropriate learned specialists, professional associations or consultants.

The selection panel will assess all eligible nominations against the following key criteria:

  • significant outcomes from the discovery or innovation, or the potential discovery or innovation, particularly in relation to other achievements within their field;
  • how the discovery or technological innovation, or the potential discovery or technological innovation, significantly advances knowledge in Victoria;
  • novelty of achievement and potential applications or future benefits;
  • international significance of the discovery or innovation or potential discovery or innovation; and
  • in the case of joint-nominees, the nature of the long-term collaboration, and how equal and complementary the respective nominee contributions have been.

The selection panel will, in its absolute discretion, select the proposed winners of the Victoria Prize for Science and Innovation on the basis of the key criteria. The panel’s recommendation will be submitted to the Minister for Jobs, Innovation & Trade.

The recommendations of the selection panel are final and appeals will not be considered. The Victorian Government and veski reserve the right not to award a prize in any year.


The nomination must include:

i. Details of two Referees qualified to assess the nomination. Referees should be from outside of the nominees’ institution.

Nominators should ensure each Referee is made aware that they will receive an email from veski including a link to the Referee Form. It is the responsibility of nominators to ensure Referees’ Reports are submitted no later than 5.00pm [AEST] on Thursday, 25 June 2020.

Please check that emails have not landed in spam/junk/promotion or clutter email folders.

ii. Professional headshot of the nominee facing the camera in a smiling, relaxed pose in front of a plain background; head and shoulders must be included with space above and to each side of your head; landscape orientation; jpeg format; high resolution (minimum 300 DPI/1 MB); full colour; 20 cms wide.


Obligations of recipients

Each nominee shall give permission for details contained in the nomination to be released to the members of the selection panel and referees (both those listed in the nomination form and external referees) for the purposes of the selection process.

Whenever such material is considered by the selection panel or referees, this information and details of their deliberations and recommendations will remain confidential, except for information that is required to be disclosed by law or used by an employee of veski in carrying out their duties. Nominees should note that a description of the work being acclaimed and images of the recipients will be publicised.


Media engagements and award ceremony

It is anticipated that nominee’s will be notified of the success of their nomination in September 2020.

No date has yet been set for the Victoria Prize for Science and Innovation Award Ceremony due to the advice provided by the Australian Government’s Department of Health on 9 April 2020 regarding limits on public gatherings to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Updates regarding the Award Ceremony will be communicated directly to recipients.

It is expected that Victoria Prize recipients participate in media engagements where possible. 

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