RSE Public Engagement Innovator Medal

The RSE Public Engagement Innovator Medal recognises early career academics through their advancement of high-quality public engagement ‎with research.

Through encouraging those who engage the public with research, the RSE is supporting the ‎advancement of public discussion on significant matters. Rewarding those who are ‎exemplary at communicating and facilitating this engagement, is an important step in ‎enabling cultural change amongst research organizations, which is necessary to ensure that ‎the public receives the greatest benefit from Scotland’s pioneering research and innovation.‎

The Royal Society of Edinburgh launched the RSE Public Engagement Medals in 2011, and were supported by Edinburgh Beltane until 2012. The medals are supported by the James Weir Foundation.


  • Nominations can only be made by Fellows of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
  • Nominations can be made via the new online system through the member area.
  • Along with the nomination form you are required to upload a CV and publication list for the candidate as well as two references.
  • Full guidance notes can be found in the member area.


YearName(s)Institution Awarded
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

Lesley Yellowlees and Senga Robertson‐Albertyn. standing in front of a curtain