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The purpose of the prize is to recognize the work done by a Ph.D. student in Australia that is considered to be of outstanding excellence in physics.


The Bragg gold medal for the best PhD thesis by a student from an Australian University was established in 1992 as an initiative of the South Australian Branch, to commemorate Sir Laurence Bragg (whose picture is inscribed on the medal) and his father Sir William Bragg.


The medal is awarded annually to the student who is judged to have completed the most outstanding Ph.D. thesis under the auspices of an Australian university, whose degree has been approved (but not necessarily conferred) prior to the closing date for applications to the State Branch (i. e., from 1 June 2020 to 1 June 2021).  No candidate may be nominated more than once.

Only one medal shall be awarded; there is no possibility of a dual award.  If the selection committee considers that none of the theses submitted reaches an appropriate standard, no award will be made.


Each Australian university may nominate one candidate.  These nominations are submitted to the State Branch committee.  The committee selects the best thesis from their State (two for NSW and Vic), and electronic copies (or links) of the selected thesis, citation and referees’ reports are then forwarded to the AIP  Special Projects Officer. Nominators should note that when attaching a link to the student thesis, this link must be accessible by others outside of their own university.

Time Line

Nominations from the universities should reach the Secretary of the local State Branch by 1 July each year.

The selected nominations from the State Branches, with the accompanying documentation outlined, should reach the  AIP Special Projects Officer, by 1 September each year.

Presentation of the Award

The medal will be presented to the chosen candidate at the Congress in even numbered years, and in odd numbered years at a function to be arranged by the AIP Branch of the State of the candidate’s university.  The medal will not be awarded in absentia; the candidate must be available for the presentation at a time which is mutually convenient.  Reasonable expenses in attending the presentation will be met by the Council of the AIP.

Further Information

Can be obtained from the Special Projects Officer.

Previous Winners

  • 2020 Dr Alexander Bray, Australian National University

  • 2019 Dr Samuel Gorman, University of New South Wales

  • 2018 Dr Yevgeny Stadnik, University of New South Wales
  • 2017 Dr Daniel Leykam, Australian National University
  • 2016 Dr Phiala Shanahan, University of Adelaide
  • 2015 Dr Jarryd Pla, University of New South Wales
  • 2014 Dr Andrew Sutton, Australian National University
  • 2013 Dr Martin Fuechsle, University of New South Wales
  • 2012 Dr Eva Kuhnle, Swinburne University of Technology
  • 2011 Dr Adrian D’Alfonso, University of Melbourne
  • 2010 Dr Clancy William James, University of Adelaide
  • 2009 Dr. Christian Romer Rosberg, Australian National University
  • 2008 Dr Frank Ruess, University of New South Wales
  • 2006 Dr Alex Argyros, University of Sydney
  • 2005 Dr Philip Bartlett, Murdoch University
  • 2004 Dr Warwick Bowen, Australian National University
  • 2003 Dr Michael Bromley, Charles Darwin University
  • 2002 Dr Annette Berriman, Australian National University
  • 2001 Dr Nicole Bell, University of Melbourne
  • 2000 Dr Mark Oxley, University of Melbourne
  • 1999 Dr Ping Koy Lam, Australian National University
  • 1998 Dr Tanya Monro, University of Sydney
  • 1997 Dr Alexander Buryak, Australian National University
  • 1996 Dr Andre Luiten, University of Western Australia
  • 1995 Dr Howard Wiseman, University of Queensland
  • 1994 Dr Wolodymyr Melnitchouk, University of Adelaide
  • 1993 Dr Henry Chapman, University of Melbourne
  • 1992 Dr Stephen Bass, University of Adelaide

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