Instituted in 2014, the annual Sir William Wakeham award recognises early career researchers (no more than 5 years of postdoctoral research experience, excluding career breaks) who have made a significant contribution to their research field and have advanced their professional development. There is a £2000 prize associated with the award and the winner is also invited give a presentation at the annual postdoctoral symposium.

Sir William Wakeham

Sir William Wakeham is a visiting professor at the Department of Chemical Engineering at Imperial College London.  He first joined the Department as a lecturer in 1971, and was Head of the Department from 1988 until 1996, when he became Deputy Rector of the College. From 2001 to 2009 he was Vice-Chancellor of the University of Southampton. He was knighted in 2009 for services to Chemical Engineering and to Higher Education.

2018 award

Details of how to apply for the 2018 awards round will be published here at the end of this year.

Past winners


Winners: Dr Petr Yatsyshin and Dr Robert Woodward

Highly comended: Dr Anna Hankin

Read an interview with the 2017 winners: Recognising outstanding early career researchers


Winners:  Dr Agi Talbot-Brandt and Dr Patrizia Marchetti

Highly commended: Dr Sheila Samsatli

Read an interview with the 2016 winners: Sir William Wakeham Award 2016 winners Patrizia Marchetti and Agi Brandt-Talbot.


Winner: Dr James Kimber (Read an interview with Dr James Kimber)
Highly commended: Dr Patrizia Marchetti


Winners: Dr Natasha Shirshova and Dr Ivan Zadrazil
Special commendation: Dr Ludmila Peeva, Dr Andrew Haslam and Dr Zhentao Wu
(*Note the 2014 award was not limited to postdocs with under 5 years' postdoc experience.)