The James Clerk Maxwell Young Writer's Prize
James Clerk Maxwell began writing scientific papers when he was a teenager. His first paper on "On the description of oval curves, and those having a plurality of foci " was read for him at the Royal Society of Edinburgh by Professor James Forbes, who later became his teacher in Natural Philosophy when he enrolled in the University of Edinburgh. The encouragement of the young Maxwell by those already in the profession stimulated Maxwell to aspire to pursue a career in Natural Philosophy that combined research and teaching. Throughout that career Maxwell's scientific papers covering a wide range of topics at the forefront of his subjects were characterised by thoroughness, lucidity and the thoughtful use of clear language. The James Clerk Maxwell Foundation in underwriting the international young writer's prize is taking the lead set by Maxwell's contemporaries of encouraging young scientifc authors. The Foundation is very pleased to offer the annual prize of $1000 and certificate, in conjunction with Taylor & Francis, publishers of Philosophical Magazine and Philosophical Magazine Letters. Maxwell himself published ground-breaking papers in 'Phil. Mag.' on colour perception, the dynamical theory of gases, electricity and magnetism, statics, govenors and 'on hills and dales'. Additional certificates will be awarded by the publishers for papers judged as highly commended.
Potential applicants are referred to Taylor and Francis James Clerk Maxwell Young Writer's Prize web page for an application form and access to the winning papers since the award was inaugurated in 2008. In brief, eligible nominees are those who were studying for, or had completed, a PhD (or equivalent) within the two years prior to the publication date of their article. Nominees are required to explain their contribution within a multi-author paper and have the support of either the senior co-author or their PhD supervisor. The deadline for submission to be considered in the current year is 31st December. The decision of the Taylor & Francis editors is final. The Prize is presented by the Editor of the Philosophical Magazine at the annual meeting of the American Physical Society.
For his research James Clerk Maxwell won the Adams Prize from Cambridge, the Rumford Medal from the Royal Society of London and the Keith Prize from the Royal Society of Edinburgh. These prizes enhanced his standing among his contemporaries and we hope that the James Clerk Maxwell Young Writer's Prize will also help our winners establish a succesful career in science. The Taylor and Francis James Clerk Maxwell Young Writer's Prize web page includes details of the highly commended authors and papers.