This website uses cookies
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. By continuing browsing we assume you accept the use of cookies. Find Out More


The Edinburgh Medal

The Edinburgh Medal was instituted by the City of Edinburgh Council in 1988. Each year this prestigious award is given to men and women of science and technology whose professional achievements are judged to have made a significant contribution to the understanding and well-being of humanity. The Medalist then delivers a lecture at the Edinburgh International Science Festival.

Edinburgh Medal 2016
The 2016 Edinburgh Medal was jointly awarded to Kevin Govender and the International Astronomical Union (IAU) to recognise their wider reaching contribution to science. It was awarded jointly for the creation and practical establishment of Astronomy for Development which integrates the pursuit of scientific knowledge with social development for and with those most in need.

The IAU is an interational astronomical organisation which brings together almost 10,000 distinguished astronomers from all nations of the world. Its mission is to promote and safeguard the science of astronomy in all aspects through international cooperation. Under the pioneering stewardship of Kevin Govender, the Office of Astronomy for Development has succesfully harnassed astronomy in the service of education and capacity building in the developing world.

Kevin was joined by Silvia Torres-Peimbert, President of the International Astronomical Union, to deliver the 2016 Edinburgh Medal Address: Astronomy for a Better World at the City Chambers on Wednesday 30 March 2016. The evening included an oration by Lord Martin Rees and vote of thanks by Monica Grady.

Previous Recipients
2015 Mary Midgley
2014 Prof Mary Abukutsa-Onyango
2013 Prof Peter Higgs and CERN
2012 Dr James Hansen
2011 Prof Carl Djerassi
2010 Sir Alex Jefferies
2009 Prof Jonathan Beckwith
2008 Prof Chris Rapley
2007 Dr Richard Horton
2006 Prof James Lovelock
2005 Prof Colin Blakemore
2004 Prof Steven Rose
2003 Prof Wang Sung
2002 Dr Lise Kingo
2001 Sir John Sulston
2000 Prof Lynn Margulis
1999 Prof Jocelyn Bell Burnell
1998 Sir David Attenborough
1997 Prof Amartya Sen
1996 Prof Richard Levins
1995 Sir John Crofton
1994 Prof Manuel Pattarroya
1993 Prof Wangari Maathai
1992 Prof Heinz Wolff
1991 Prof Jane Goodall
1990 Prof Stephen J Gould
1989 Prof Abdus Salam