Oran R. Young Prize - An Award for Early Career Scholars

The Oran R. Young Prize awarded by the Earth System Governance Project seeks to reward and encourage cutting-edge research on earth system governance by early-career scholars who could become the next generation of leading scholars in the field of environmental governance research – a field shaped and significantly influenced by the pioneering work of Prof. Oran R. Young.

Oran R. Young has inspired and supported countless young scholars – many of them now leading researchers and teachers in the field themselves. The Oran R. Young Prize is awarded in recognition of his invaluable contribution to advancing the frontiers of research on the institutional dimensions of global environmental change and earth system governance, and equally to honor his enthusiasm and dedication in teaching, mentoring and supporting early-career researchers.

The Oran R. Young Prize will be awarded for the best paper presented at the annual Earth System Governance Open Science Conference authored by early-career scholars. The Prize Committee is chaired by Earth System Governance Steering Group member Michele M. Betsill (Colorado State University). The committee will select the winning paper based on academic quality and novelty as well as relevance to the Earth System Governance Research Framework.

The prize has been awarded for the first time at the Earth System Governance Tokyo Conference in January 2013 to Rakhyun E. Kim (Fenner School of Environment and Society, The Australian National University) for his paper on The Emergent Network Structure of the Multilateral Environmental Agreement System as the best early-career paper of the 2013 Tokyo Conference. [read more]

The prize has been awarded for the second time at the Earth System Governance Norwich Conference in July 2014 to Hamish van der Ven  (Department of Political Science, University of Toronto) for his paper on The Correlates of Best Practice in Transnational Eco-Labeling as the best early-career paper of the 2014 Norwich Conference. [read more]

The prize has been awarded for the third time at the Earth System Governance Canberra Conference in December 2015 to Sandra van der Hel (Department of Environmental Policy Analysis of the Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM), VU University Amsterdam), for her paper on New Science for Global Sustainability? The Institutionalisation of Knowledge Co-production in Future Earth as the best early-career paper of the 2015 Canberra Conference. [read more]

The Oran R. Young Prize is generously co-sponsored by The MIT Press


- The paper must be accepted for presentation to an Earth System Governance open science conference;

- The paper must be submitted in its final or very advanced (review ready) version before the deadline specified for each conference by the Prize Committee;

- The paper must be authored by one or more early-career researchers, or by an early-career researcher as first author whereby early-career is defined as Master student, PhD-student or researcher who has received their PhD within 5 years prior to the deadline;

- Papers (co-)authored by members of the Oran R. Young Prize Committee, and by staff of the International Project Office are not eligible.