Award those who would truly benefit from receiving the recognition.

Bilal Zuberi
Sep 28, 2017 · 1 min read

1/ A humble suggestion for awards/prizes given to faculty members.

2/ Might not be a bad idea to have very few and select awards be given to faculty members who have already obtained tenure.

3/ And reserve a majority of the rest of such named awards (that often come with small $$ attached) to non-tenured faculty, those still trying to make it.

4/ I have noticed, since my PhD days, that senior faculty keep adding prizes to their already long CVs. Reality is that…

5/ …they don’t really care about such awards and just add trophies to their shelves. It’s like a celebrity getting likes on their tweets. At some point you stop caring. And giving orgs don’t get to do the hard work required in selecting among those not already proven.

6/ In contrast, young and upcoming scientists would value such awards much more. It would mean so much more to their careers.

7/ And they are more likely to promote the awards more, thus furthering the goal and reach of the awarding organizations as well.

8/ In the meantime it’s fine to have the really big awards (the Nobel Prizes, Heinz awards and such) be open to all faculty.

9/ Possibly we will see more young scientists seeing support for their work and achievements.

10/ And if nothing else, at least we won’t fill back pages of science publications with award announcements that no one reads, including the awardees themselves.

BZ Notes

I am an early stage VC, partner at Lux Capital.

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