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Nominations Open for Two NSF Awards: Alan Waterman, Vannevar Bush


The National Science Foundation is currently accepting nominations for two prestigious awards. Consider nominating an individual from your department today! The Alan Waterman Award recognizes an outstanding young researcher in any field of science or engineering supported by NSF.  The Vannevar Bush Award honors truly exceptional lifelong leaders in science and technology who have made substantial contributions to the welfare of the Nation through public service activities in science, technology, and public policy.

Several recipients of the awards in recent years have a background in computing research; among them are:

Alan Waterman Award

  • Scott J. Aaronson, TIBCO Career Development Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT (2012)

“For numerous fundamental contributions to quantum computing and theoretical computer science and for popularization of quantum information science. “

  • Robert J. Wood, Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering at Harvard University (2012)

“For his development of multi-scale, multi-material fabrication methods for automated monolithic assembly of high performance, innovative robots, and for his outreach efforts to make science and engineering accessible to all.”

  • Subhash A. Khot, Associate Professor of Computer Science, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University (2010)

“For unexpected and original contributions to computational complexity, notably the Unique Games Conjecture, and the resulting rich connections and consequences in optimization, computer science and mathematics.”

Vannevar Bush Award

  • Richard Tapia, University Professor and Maxfield-Oshman Professor of Engineering, Department of Computational and Applied Mathematics, Rice University (2014). Tapia was also the first recipient of CRA’s A. Nico Habermann award in 1994.

“For his extraordinary leadership, inspiration, and advocacy to increase opportunities for underrepresented minorities in science; distinguished public service leadership in science and engineering; and exceptional contributions to mathematics in the area of computational optimization.”

  • Raj Reddy, Mozah Bint Nasser University Professor of Computer Science and Robotics, School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University (2006)

“For his pioneering research in robotics and intelligent systems, and significant contributions in the formation of national information and telecommunications policy.”

Alan Waterman Award Details
Nomination Form:
Application Deadline: October 21, 2016
Award: In addition to a medal, the awardee receives a grant of $1,000,000 over a five year period for scientific research or advanced study in the mathematical, physical, biological, engineering, social, or other sciences at the institution of the recipient’s choice.
Eligibility and Selection Criteria:

  • A candidate must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. He or she must be 35 years of age or younger, OR not more than 7 years beyond receipt of the Ph.D. degree, byDecember 31st of the year in which they are nominated.
  • A candidate should have demonstrated exceptional individual achievement in scientific or engineering research of sufficient quality, originality, innovation, and significant impact on the field so as to situate him or her as a leader among peers.

For more information: please see the Waterman Award fact sheet, prepared by the NSF Office of Legislative and Public Affairs:


Vannevar Bush Award Details
Nomination Form:
Application Deadline: October 3, 2016
Eligibility and Selection Criteria:Candidates for the Vannevar Bush Award should have demonstrated outstanding leadership and accomplishment in meeting at least two of the following selection criteria:

  • Candidates must be U.S. citizens.
  • Distinguished himself/herself through public service activities in science and technology.
  • Pioneered the exploration, charting, and settlement of new frontiers in science, technology, education, and public service.
  • Demonstrated leadership and creativity that have inspired others to distinguished careers in science and technology.
  • Contributed to the welfare of the Nation and mankind through activities in science and technology.
  • Demonstrated leadership and creativity that has helped mold the history of advancements in the Nation’s science, technology, and education.