Victoria Prize criteria

The Victoria Prize celebrates leadership, determination and creativity. It also highlights the many ways in which research and development of international significance are conducted in Victoria.

The 2016 Victoria Prize for Science & Innovation is worth $50,000 per prize and will be awarded to outstanding science leaders.

These prestigious prizes are for a scientific discovery or technological innovation, or a series of such achievements that significantly advances knowledge.  The clear potential to produce a commercial outcome or other substantial benefit to the community will be highly regarded. 

veski on behalf of the Victorian Government will deliver the 2013 Victoria Prize for Science & Innovation comprising:
  • One prize for Life Sciences
  • One prize for Physical Sciences.

Read about previous recipients of the Victoria Prize for Science & Innovation.

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



 Nomination requirements

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.


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 & Innovation is normally 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 more than one individual 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 (23 June 2016); 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 & 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 nomination form must include details of at least two referees qualified to assess the nomination. International referees and referees outside the applicant’s organisation or department are strongly encouraged. 

Applicants should ensure each referee has been provided with a copy of the nomination.  It is the responsibility of applicants to ensure their referees’ reports are submitted no later than 5.00pm on Thursday, 23 June 2016.





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 nominees will be notified of the status of their nomination by 31 August 2016 and that the Victoria Prize for Science & Innovation Award Ceremony will be held on 20 October 2016. 

The recipients of the Victoria Prize for Science & Innovation will be required to attend the Award Ceremony and be available for any associated media and communication activities. 

An objective of the Victoria Prize for Science & Innovation is to actively promote the status of engineering, science and technology as professional career choices. The recipients of the Victoria Prize for Science & Innovation are expected to:

  • participate in activities promoting the importance of science, engineering and technology to Victoria’s future;
  • participate in ‘think tank’ activities organised by veski to provide advice on future directions in their field;
  • interact with winners of the Victoria Fellowship to promote sharing of ideas and experience across disciplines; and
  • include reference to the award of the Victoria Prize as a significant achievement or equivalent on their curriculum vitae and professional biography and in media releases for a period of 10 years. 

Victoria Prize recipients will also be called upon to actively participate in veski activities as part of the veski alliance, which includes veski innovation fellows, veski board members and Victoria Fellows.


Recipients may be invited to participate in additional activities and events organised by veski subsequent to the awards to promote innovation at public fora or conferences.

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