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Wilkins-Bernal-Medawar Medal and Lecture

John Wilkins FRS, John Desmond Bernal FRS and Peter Medawar FRS
John Wilkins FRS, John Desmond Bernal FRS, and Peter Medawar FRS

The award

The Wilkins-Bernal-Medawar Medal and Lecture is given for excellence in a subject relating to the history of science, philosophy of science or the social function of science. The Wilkins, Bernal and Medawar lectures were originally delivered as three separate lectures, each given triennially. Since 2007, they have been combined under the one title of the Wilkins-Bernal-Medawar Lecture. The medal is of bronze, is awarded annually and is accompanied by a gift of £2,000. 


The Wilkins-Bernal-Medawar medal and lecture is open to UK/Commonwealth/Irish Republic citizens or those who have been residents for three or more years. There are no restrictions on career stage and nominations will remain valid and shall be considered by the award selection committee throughout three nomination cycles. 

For further information on the eligibility criteria and the nominations process, please see our guidance (PDF).


Nominations are now closed and will reopen in November 2022.

Past winners

Professor June Barrow-Green was awarded the Wilkins-Bernal-Medawar Medal in 2021 and will present her lecture at a future date. 

Professor Jim Al-Khalili OBE FRS was awarded the Wilkins-Bernal-Medawar Medal in 2020 and presented his lecture What is (Quantum) Life? 

Professor Simon Schaffer was awarded the Wilkins-Bernal-Medawar Medal in 2019 and presented his lecture Defining science through history

See full list of all past winners of the Wilkins-Bernal-Medawar Lecture.

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