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Honorary Life Membership

The Palaeontological Association recognizes excellence in our profession by the award of medals and other prizes. The Association sees its lists of medals and award winners as a record of the very best palaeontologists worldwide, at different career stages, and offering different kinds of contributions to the field. The Association stresses the importance of nominations and encourages all members to make nominations. Members considering making nominations should first read the Palaeontological Association ‘Statement of Diversity’ below.

Statement of Diversity

The Palaeontological Association has an Unconscious Bias document, the recommendations of which will be adhered to at all times. All decision-making for Palaeontological Association awards and prizes will be carried out objectively and professionally. The Association is committed to making award and prize decisions purely on the basis of the merit of the individual(s). No nominee for awards or prizes will receive less favourable treatment on the grounds of: gender, marital status, sexual orientation, gender re-assignment, race, colour, nationality, ethnicity or national origins, religion or similar philosophical belief, spent criminal conviction, age or disability. Equally, all nominations will be assessed on equal terms, regardless of the gender, age and/or ethnicity of the nominee. Nominations will therefore be assessed and graded on their merits, in accordance with the criteria and the aims and objectives set for each award or medal. Due consideration will be given to any period away from science due to parental leave, illness and any other such career break. Nominators are reminded that neutral language (e.g. gender neutral) should be used in all nominations.

The Palaeontological Association acknowledges the existence of various academic career paths and recognises the challenges associated with balancing an academic career alongside personal commitments. When assessing applicants' eligibility and experience, the Association will take into account periods spent outside the academic environment. These periods may be the result of  ill health, parental and/or adoptive leave, caring responsibilities, career breaks, etc. (note that this list is not exhaustive). Applicants who have taken periods outside the academic environment are strongly encouraged to include this information in any grant/award application. Furthermore, individuals with any disabilities are strongly encouraged to highlight these aspects in their applications. In the event that these factors apply to an applicant, even if no work leave was taken, we strongly advise that applicants make these factors known during the application process as we are aware that such factors can significantly slow down past and ongoing academic careers. 

In the case of awards granted through the nomination schemes, we ask that nominators bring attention to these aspects if they are aware of them. In the event that the nominators are unsure, they are strongly advised to contact the Diversity Officer (, who can approach the nominee directly and inquire whether they would like to disclose any career breaks or other relevant factors that should be taken into consideration during the evaluation of the award. The Diversity Officer ( can be contacted at any time for advice and assistance.

Honorary Life Membership selection procedures

The Palaeontological Association Council discusses Honorary Life Memberships at the May Council meeting and votes to select awardees. The benefit of using Council to select awardees, rather than a dedicated awards committee, is that it draws on the wider experience of the entire Council. Voting is preceded by an introduction from the President that: (i) includes a diversity statement to remind Council of their responsibility in terms of fairness and diversity issues (including impact of non-standard careers etc.); (ii) outlines the remit and selection criteria for each award; (iii) considers the impact of awardees in terms of increasing the diversity of recipients. Each award is considered in turn with every application considered except those that clearly fall outside of the remit. Multiple Honorary Life Memberships may be awarded each year.

Honorary Life Membership

Honorary Life Membership recognizes individuals whom Council deems to have been significant benefactors and/or supporters of the Association. Recipients will receive free membership for life.

The candidate must be nominated by two members of the Association (proposer and seconder; names and contacts details required). The nomination must consist of a one-page statement (font-size 12) outlining the nature of their support for the Palaeontological Association. In addition, a Professional Standards and Behaviour declarations by the nominators in relation to the nominee (

) are required to be completed. The outline should be uploaded as a PDF via this webpage by the deadline. The completed Professional Standards and Behaviour form should be either combined with the aforementioned PDF or emailed separately to the Secretary and/or Executive Officer.

The award will be considered by Council at its May meeting and announced at the AGM. The award will also be announced in the Newsletter, on the Association website and through social media.

Nominations are invited by 31st March each year.


31st March at 23:59 GMT


Nomination Form

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