2022 Round opens:  4 August 2022

2022 round closes:  1:00pm, 18 October 2022


Tēnā koe

Welcome to the Prime Minister’s MacDiarmid Emerging Scientist Prize. The 2022 round is now open.

For those applicants who applied for this Prize in 2021 through the portal you can retrieve your past application and use it as a basis as a new application.  For more information about that please click here.  Please be aware that templates for 2022 could have quite possibly been updated.

For new applicants please read the information on this page and then click on link under the ‘red’ heading further down the page when you are ready to apply. This will take you to further documents providing useful information.

We thoroughly recommend you read all the information and if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us at pmscienceprizes@royalsociety.org.nz

Ngā mihi


About this Prize



  • The Prize will be awarded to an outstanding emerging scientist1 who has had their PhD conferred within the past eight (8) years. i.e. (no earlier than 1 January 2014)
  • Please note that if you have had career interruptions since your PhD has been conferred including being a primary caregiver of dependent children please email to outline what these are to pmscienceprizes@royalsociety.org.nz
  • The applicant must be either a New Zealand citizen or a New Zealand permanent resident, currently domiciled in New Zealand
  • The recipient of the Prize is expected to remain active in research in New Zealand for at least the year following the presentation of the Prize.

Re-application by candidates from previous years is encouraged, as long as they still meet the current eligibility criteria.  Past winners of the Prize are not eligible to apply for this particular Prize.

1Taken to include natural, physical, mathematical and information sciences, applied science, technology, engineering, social science and multi-disciplinary science


  • The total value of the Prize is $200,000.
  • $50,000 is for the recipient and can be used with no conditions
  • $150,000 must be used for the recipients ongoing research.




The prized will be adjudicated on the following criteria. (with cross references to an evidence portfolio):

  • The research carried out by the applicant is leading edge in its field;
  • The research has already, or is likely to result in the generation of valuable new knowledge in the field, or have wider impact;
  • The applicant is able to effectively communicate their research.

Each applicant should address these criteria in their application and cross-reference that statement with an Evidence Portfolio to support their application.

Assessment will include consideration of referee statements and an interview of shortlisted applicants.


Applying, Application Process and finding your way around the Portal

Once the applicant has read all of documentation on this page please click on the application process link which will provide more information about the process and finding your way around the portal Application process and finding your way around the portal 


Selection panel

The 2022 selection panel members are in the process of being confirmed and will be published here soon.

Panellists are appointed by the Pou Whakahaere Chief Executive of Royal Society Te Apārangi based on the recommendation of the panel Chairs and Secretariat. Appointments are made on a year-by-year basis for each calendar year. Panellists can be appointed for more than one year.  Panellists must be experienced in an appropriate field or community and may be drawn from outside New Zealand if necessary.

Panels will consist of established leaders and researchers in their field, their research and in their communities.  We will also aim to bring emerging people to panels to ensure diverse views and allow for the development of people and new talent.

In considering the suitability of potential panellists, the following requirements for panel composition is considered as appropriate:

  • Mix of discipline/expertise
  • Sector and institutional balance
  • Geographic representation
  • Ethnicity
  • Gender balance.

Royal Society Te Apārangi is committed to following best practice in being inclusive of diversity within our activities.

It is recognised that occasionally members of the selection panel will know applicants or have other conflicts of interest. They will be expected to declare all such knowledge and conflicts of interest. In cases where an applicant is the colleague of a panellist, the Chair of the selection panel will rule if this conflict is significant enough for the panellist to be stood down from the panel for that entry. (In the case of the Chair having a conflict of interest the decision will be made by another member of the panel who has been identified in this role at the beginning of the process).

The selection panel will not enter into any correspondence concerning its deliberations. All inquiries should be directed to the Secretariat. Note that information on matters such as ranking, or names of unsuccessful entrants, will not be disclosed.



The Secretariat gives no undertaking to keep confidential any information that is provided in this application unless this is identified as information that should be treated as such. It may, for example, be used to prepare promotional material for the prize in future years.

Please note that information submitted on the entry form may be subject to the Official Information Act.




  • Two referees will be required to support the Applicant’s application.
  • The Selection Panel at its sole discretion, may request further referees or make contact with outside parties.



  • The recipient of the Prize may be expected to be involved in promotional opportunities appropriate to receiving The Prime Minister’s MacDiarmid Emerging Scientist Prize.
  • The $150,000 will be used for ongoing research as per the plan stated in the application.



  • The winner  is expected to make themselves available for half a day in January/February to meet with the Prime Minister’s Science Prize media liaison personnel in preparation of media material and photos.
  • The winner will be announced in February/March/April.  (date to be confirmed)
  • The winner or team will be expected to make themselves available for that announcement in Wellington.


Closing date

Applications close at 1.00pm on Tuesday 18 October.  Late applications will not be eligible.




Need help?  Have other pātai questions?

Ko te Kaiwhakahaere the Secretariat for The Prime Minister’s Science Prizes is Royal Society Te Apārangi.  Contact details are:

Te Kaiwhakahaere the Secretariat
The Prime Minister’s Science Prizes
Royal Society Te Apārangi
PO Box 598

Waea telephone: (04) 470 5762

Īmēra email: pmscienceprizes@royalsociety.org.nz.



Supported by the New Zealand Government with funding from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.  Nā Te Hīkina Whakatutuki te mana hāpai.