RSE Rosemary Hutton Medal

The RSE Rosemary Hutton Medal recognises exceptional achievements in the earth and environmental sciences by an early career researcher. This award meets with the Society’s strategic objectives of recognising and rewarding excellence in, and increasing public understanding of, the earth and environmental sciences.  The awardees are required to have a Scottish connection but can be based anywhere in the world.

Early career researcher is defined as “a researcher with a minimum of two years postdoctoral work experience and no more than ten years postdoctoral work experience” (i.e. research fellows to lecturers in their first academic posts are eligible). For those not based in academia ‘early career’ is defined as “individuals who have demonstrated outstanding ability in their work and professional practice within thirteen years of graduation.”


Nominations are currently closed.

Supporting documents

What makes a good nomination?

RSE Medals guidance notes

About Rosemary Hutton

Violet Rosemary Strachan Hutton—known as Rosemary Hutton—(1925 – 2004) was a geophysicist and a pioneer in the use of magnetotellurics (the use of electromagnetic methods to understand the electrical conductivity of the earth’s crust, lithosphere, and mantle), later developing world-leading instrumentation in this field. She was born in Dundee and was educated at Harris Academy and at the University of St Andrews, before taking up a physics lectureship at the University of Ghana. In 1961 she was awarded a PhD from London University, after which she spent 15 years in Nigeria – at first working as a senior lecturer at Ahmadu Bello University, before gaining an Associate Professorship at the University of Ibadan. Her work in Africa attracted worldwide attention, and she was invited to join the University of Edinburgh in the Department of Geophysics—now the School of GeoSciences— where she spent the next two decades. She was elected FRSE in 1983. 


Launched in autumn 2022 as part of the revised RSE Medals Programme, the RSE Rosemary Hutton Medal is a new early-career medal in the previously unrepresented sector of Earth and Environmental Sciences.

Dr Karen Lythgoe, University of Edinburgh
For their outstanding contributions to the understanding of Earth structure and processes on multiple scales with novel, dense, high-resolution seismometer arrays and the analysis of the resulting vast datasets. Dr Lythgoe detected signals that would otherwise be missed, which include confirming the presence of a postulated fault in urban Singapore, showing that large temperature variations in the Earth’s crust can cause a fault to rupture in smaller segments with impact for seismic hazard assessment, and revealing that the Earth’s inner core has more structure than previously thought with important implications for core evolution. 

Dr Lara Kalnins, University of Edinburgh
For their work in addressing fundamental geodynamic problems by combining new data, analysis and modelling, forging collaborations with colleagues in many different fields, bringing extraordinary depth and insight to her investigations. Dr Kalnins has also co-authored many publications with her research students, demonstrating real support to young academics.