RSE June Almeida Medal

The RSE June Almeida Medal recognises exceptional achievements in business, public service, and public engagement by an early career researcher. This award meets with the Society’s strategic objective of increasing public understanding of science, the arts, humanities, and the social sciences, and the advancement of learning. 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

ABOUT June Almeida

June Almeida (1930 –2007) was a virologist and pioneer in virus imaging, identification, and diagnosis. Her work as a histopathology technician at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary, then St Bartholomew’s Hospital, provided her with the skills to take up a job at the Ontario Cancer Institute as a microscopy technician. She developed new techniques for detecting viruses under the microscope, allowing her to identify viruses that had previously been unknown – including the group known as coronaviruses for their crown-like appearance. Her technique also led to the viral diseases of hepatitis B, HIV, and rubella being diagnosable in a clinical setting, allowing patients to receive faster diagnosis and treatment.


The RSE relaunched its medals in autumn 2022 to better reflect the important, and often overlooked, input of eminent women to the sciences, arts, and letters in Scotland. Read about the relaunch here.

Under the RSE Medal review, the RSE Henry Duncan Medal has been renamed the RSE June Almeida Medal and the RSE Public Engagement Medals have been subsumed under the RSE’s Business, Public Service and Public Engagement Medals.

RSE June Almeida Medallists:

YearName(s)Institution Awarded
2024Dr Hyab Yohannes YAS MemberLecturer and Research Associate: UNESCO Chair for Refugee Integrations through Languages and Arts, University of Glasgowfor his academic endeavour and public engagement as a survivor of torture and trafficking amid challenges to the Refugee Convention. As a legal expert, Dr Yohannes provides pro-bono multilingual assistance to refugees, particularly those from the Horn of Africa. Dr Yohannes offers critical and life-saving guidance, translation, interpretation, welcome and critical information to thousands of members of the diaspora in the UK and overseas through establishing effective public engagement.  
2023No award made

RSE Henry Duncan Medallists:

YearName(s)Institution Awarded
2019-2022No award made.
2018Dr Theodore KoutmeridisSenior Lecturer in Economics, Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgowfor his outstanding work in the field of economics where he combines a clear mastery of the microeconomic methodology, a keen instinct for its empirical applications and a deep commitment to engagement activities.
2017Mr Mike Welch OBECEO and Founder of, Peeblesfor his outstanding business leadership. He took his start-up company to sales of over £60m and has since sold his company to Michelin in a deal estimated to be worth £100m.
2016Mr Adam PurvisFounder and Director, Power of Youth, Edinburghfor his outstanding work in promoting entrepreneurship across the globe to build a better world through business.
2015Dr Martyn PickersgillWellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow in Biomedical Ethics, Centre for Population Health Sciences, University of Edinburghfor his outstanding research work and leadership potential in medical sociology, science and technology studies and empirical bioethics and for his commitment to public engagement and the advancement of social sciences. Dr Pickersgill is an Inaugural Member of the RSE Young Academy of Scotland.

RSE Public Engagement Innovator Medallists:

YearName(s)Institution Awarded
2022Dr Andrew WilsonUniversity of Glasgowfor founding the interdisciplinary ‘maths inside’ photo competition that seeks to spark the mathematical curiosity of the nation and raise awareness of the often-unseen mathematics around us. Attracting thousands of entries, the initiative provides an accessible and high-quality contest that inspires involvement, creativity, and reflection. In addition, Dr Wilson’s public outreach activities, such as his Street Maths project, have brought mathematical topics to new audiences through an interplay between street theatre and mathematical concepts.
2021Victoria Armstrong University of Dundee for their leading light in the area of art-based interventions to support vulnerable parent-infant dyads. She has demonstrated amazing innovation and creativity and is concurrently studying for her Doctoral degree. Victoria has adapted her public engagement with research activities to ensure that critical and even more critical support was maintained during the pandemic.
2020 Dr Paul O’MahoneyUniversity of Dundeefor their passion for engaging the public in his University of Dundee research, using a range of different mediums to achieve this and the work he has done with different groups that has had an impact on school children to patients alike.
2019Senga Robertson?AlbertynUniversity of Dundee / James Hutton Institutefor their enthusiasm, commitment and innovative approaches to public engagement.
2018Mr Lewis HouFounder and Director of the Science Ceilidh and Research Assistant, Clinical Research Imaging Centre, University of Edinburghfor their innovative and original contributions to public engagement, particularly in thinking creatively about combining arts and sciences through his Science Ceilidh which has engaged over 5000 people around the UK with science and folk festivals and collaborations with Cancer Research UK, ScienceGRRl and various science festivals, including the Edinburgh International Science Festival.
2017Dr Sinead RhodesCentre for Clinical Brain Sciences, University of Edinburghfor their substantial and innovative work with the RSE Young Academy of Scotland on the “Research the Headlines” project.
2016Dr Helen BridleHeriot-Watt Universityfor their innovative and original contributions to public engagement as an ambassador for (young women) engineers and engineering through her work including delivering her “Ingenious!” outreach scheme to schools and her publication in “Lab on a Chip” which has led to increased public engagement activities across schools and science festivals.
2015Dr Mhairi StewartWellcome Trust Centre for Molecular Parasitology, University of Glasgow,for their outstanding contribution to public engagement through her innovative practice of engaging through communities of interest by using creativity as a tool for engagement, particularly in creating art and science collaborative activities.
2014Dr Kevin O’DellUniversity of Glasgowfor their outstanding contribution to public engagement through his skills in both genetics and communication to engage young adults with the world of genetics, particularly through his Zombie Science show.
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