Awards & Prizes
2005 Wistar Institute Science Journalism award winner announced
Apr 15, 2005 - 6:43:38 PM

The winner of the 2005 Wistar Institute Science Journalism Award is science writer Stephen S. Hall. He won for his article in the May 2004 issue of Discover magazine titled "The Good Egg," an investigation of the biological events affecting the development of a human egg prior to conception that can determine the outcome of a pregnancy. The award and cash prize of $5,000 will be presented to Hall at a ceremony in Philadelphia on June 3.

The award committee judges praised Hall for his novel exploration of the beginnings of human life, especially life conceived with artificial reproductive assistance. The committee was impressed by Hall's account not only of the relevant science, but also of the people conducting that science. His article further captured the kinds of debate on which science thrives, and illuminated some of the cultural and political issues bearing on this line of research. The judges also noted the inviting presentation and informative illustrations supporting the article in the magazine.

The six members of the 2005 judging committee were: Deborah Blum (co-chair), professor of journalism, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a 1992 Pulitzer Prize winner; Joe Palca (co-chair), senior science correspondent for National Public Radio; Sue Goetinck Ambrose, science writer for The Dallas Morning News (and a 2004 winner of the Wistar Award); Jon Palfreman, independent documentary film producer; Charles Petit, freelance journalist; and Nancy Shute, senior writer for U.S. News & World Report.

The Wistar Institute Science Journalism Award aims to honor annually the most insightful and enterprising reporting on the basic biomedical sciences in print or broadcast journalism. The award acknowledges biomedical research as a key force for change in the world today, with important economic and social implications for the future. Intelligent, perceptive journalism written in broadly accessible language plays a primary role in communicating progress in biomedicine to the public, which both supports and is the beneficiary of basic biomedical research. For these reasons, journalistic excellence in this area is of the highest importance and deserves to be honored.

Science journalists working in all media are invited to submit their work for consideration for the 2006 Wistar Institute Science Journalism Award. Up to five stories or broadcast reports from an individual journalist or team of journalists may be submitted as an entry. These may be selections from a series or a collection of stories representative of the entrant's coverage of the basic biomedical sciences. Books are not eligible. The work must have been published or broadcast in English between January 1 and December 31, 2005. The deadline for submissions is February 28, 2006.

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