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2021 Science & SciLifeLab for Young Scientists

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  • Entrants for the 2021 prize must have been awarded their Ph.D. between January 1 2019 and December 31 2020. As a rule, we will only accept submissions once within this time period.
  • The research described in the entrant’s thesis must fall within one of the following categories (Subject Tracks):
    1. Cell and Molecular Biology: research in this category includes cellular and molecular processes at levels ranging from single molecule to single cell to tissue and organ systems.
    2. Genomics, Proteomics and Systems Biology approaches: Research in this category focuses on genomics, proteomics, integrative omics and systems biology approaches, including computational, to facilitate comprehensive understanding of living cells, organisms and species.
    3. Ecology & Environment: research in this category encompasses interactions between organisms and their environment, and how these processes are influenced by human activity,
    4. Molecular Medicine:  research in this category aims at building on the molecular understanding of disease in humans to develop preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic approaches, including individualized medicine.
  • The prize will only recognize work that was performed while the entrant was a graduate student.
  • The prize will be awarded without regard to sex, race, or nationality.
  • Employees of SciLifeLab, AAAS, and collaborators in the management or sponsorship of this Prize and their relatives are not eligible to compete for the prize.


The entrant must submit the following items:

  1. A completed Entry Form.
  2. An essay, written by the entrant, describing the thesis work and its implications for research in the selected Subject Track. The essay must not exceed 1,000 words in length and may include one figure or table.
  3. A one-page reference letter from your advisor or a member of your thesis committee. The letter should include an assessment of the applicant and comment on the significance of the applicant’s research.
  4. A list of the following:
    (a) Full citations of all published or in press papers on the research described in the essay;
    (b) Academic and professional awards and honors that the entrant has received; and
    (c) Relevant professional experience.
  5. The abstract of the thesis (not to exceed four double-spaced typed pages).

Below is a timeline for the prize selection process. You will be contacted only if there are additional materials or information needed.

August–September: Compilation and Review of Submissions
October-November: Selection of Prize Winner
December: Announcement of Prize Winner & Awards Ceremony in Stockholm


July 15, 2021


First, Science editors will screen the essays and select three finalists from each Subject Track. Next, a committee of scientists chaired by the Editor-in-Chief of Science will select a winner for each Subject Track. The four winners will then compete for the grand prize. The grand prize winner and three category winners will be decided by October. Science will control both the evaluation process and the announcement of the winners.