The Micropalaeontological Society

Awards and Grants

Society Awards and Honours

The Society has many awards, please click on one for more information.

The Brady Medal

This is the highest award of The Micropalaeontological Society. It is named in honour of George Stewardson Brady (1832-1921) and Henry Bowman Brady (1835-1891) in recognition of their outstanding pioneering studies in micropalaeontology and natural history.

The Medal is awarded to scientists who have had a major influence on micropalaeontology by means of a substantial body of excellent research. Service to the scientific community may also be a factor for consideration by the Award Committee. The medal was commissioned and was awarded for the first time in 2007 to Prof. John W. Murray.

The Medal is cast in bronze from original sculptures commissioned by The Micropalaeontological Society in 2007.  The sculptor is Anthony Stones, Fellow of the Royal Society of British Sculptors and President (1999-2004) of The Society of Portrait Sculptors. The Medal is hand crafted by the leading sculpture foundry Pangolin Editions of Chalford, England.

Mechanism for making a nomination:

All nominations must be made on the TMS “Brady Medal” nomination pro-forma. Nominations must have a Proposer and Seconder, both of whom should be Members of the Society and not be affiliated to the same institute as the person they nominate.  The completed nomination form should be returned to the Secretary of the Society.  Nominations may be made at any time of the year. Nominations must be made in the strictest confidence and in no circumstance should the person nominated be informed.

Previous Recipients of the Brady Medal:

  • 2017: Prof. John R. Hayes
  • 2016: Prof. Ellen Thomas
  • 2015: Dr. Marty Buzas
  • 2014: Prof. David Siveter
  • 2013: Dr. Graham Lee Williams
  • 2012: Prof. Richard J. Aldridge
  • 2011: Prof. John A. Barron
  • 2010: Prof. Christopher R. Barnes
  • 2009: Prof. Thomas M. Cronin
  • 2008: Prof. Katharina von Salis
  • 2007: Prof. John W. Murray

The Alan Higgins Award for Applied Micropaleontology

Presented annually to a young scientist in recognition of significant achievement in the field of applied and industrial micropalaeontology.

Alan Charles Higgins (1936–2004), was a micropalaeontologist and expert on conodonts, who made major contributions to Palaeozoic biostratigraphy, and helped firmly establish the value of micropalaeontology in hydrocarbon exploration. He was the founding member of TMS, its past Chairman and Honorary Member.

The Higgins Award is given to a young scientist, less than 10 years from graduation, in recognition of significant achievement in the field of applied and industrial micropalaeontology, as documented by publications, software, patents, leadership or educational activities. The award has been established with the help of Alan’s family and friends, to commemorate his contribution to micropalaeontology and to encourage young researchers in the field. It will be presented in person at the Society’s AGM in November, and one award will usually be made each year. The award has a value of £300, but more importantly, it is meant to serve as a substantive endorsement of the value of the recipient’s work, made by his peers. The first award was made in 2010.

Mechanism for making a nomination:

All nominations must be made on the following nomination pro-forma and submitted to the Secretary. Nominations can be made by any TMS member. The nominees need not be members of TMS. The award is normally given annually and resubmission of unsuccessful nominees is possible. Nominations must be received by the 28th February. Nominations must be made in the strictest confidence and in no circumstance should the person nominated be informed.

Past recipients of the Alan Higgins Award:

  • 2017: Eiichi Setoyama
  • 2016: Fabrizio Frontalini
  • 2015: Tom Hill
  • 2013: Erik Anthonissen
  • 2012: Tom Dunkley Jones
  • 2011: Bridget Wade
  • 2010: Severyn Kender

The Charles Downie Award

Presented annually to a Society member for the most significant publication

The late Charles Downie was one of the pioneers of palynology in the U.K. and a mentor who guided the thinking and development of a large number of postgraduate students who passed through the University of Sheffield. Through the efforts of former colleagues at Sheffield, a permanent memorial has now been established to recognize Charles’ contribution to micropalaeontology. An annual award will be made to the society  member, who in the opinion of the Committee, has published the most significant paper, in any journal, based upon his or her postgraduate research.

The award of £200 is made for the best paper published during each year and will be presented at the society AGM in November.

Mechanism for making a nomination:

Nominations should be submitted either to the secretary of the appropriate Specialist Group, or the Secretary. The award is normally given annually. Nominations must be received by the 28th February. Nominations must be made in the strictest confidence and in no circumstance should the person nominated be informed.

Charles Downie Memorial Award Contributors:

R. L. Austin
G. A. Booth
B. Braham
J. P. Bujak
G. Clayton
M. D. Crane
S. Duxbury
G. L. Eaton
G. A. Forbes
K. J. Gueinn
A. M. Harding
R. Harland
K. Higgs
P. J. Hill
A. Hossein Zahiri
W. A. M. Jenkins
J. K. Lentin
R. S. W. Neville
B. Owens
T. L. Potter
A. J. Powell
S. M. Rasul
M. Razzo
J. B. Riding
W. A. S. Sarjeant
J. E. Thomas
J. Utting
D. Wall
M. J. Whiteley
G. L. Williams

Subscriptions are welcome at any time; please send donations to the Treasurer.

Past recipients of the Charles Downie Award (in chronological order):

  1. Paul Dodsworth (University of Sheffield)
    Dodsworth, P. 2000. Trans-atlantic dinoflagellate cyst stratigraphy across the Cenomanian-Turonian (Creataceaous) Stage Boundary. Journal of Micropalaeontology, 19, 69-84.
  2. Gary Mullins (University of Leicester)
    Mullins, G. 2001. Acritarchs and prasinophyte algae of the Elton Group, Ludlow Series, of the type area. Monograph of the Palaeontographical Society, London, 155, 154pp.
  3. Henning Blom
    Blom, H, Märss, T. and Miller, G.C., 2002. Silurian and earliest Devonian Birkeniid anaspids from the Northern Hemisphere. Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh: Earth Science, 92(3-4), 263-323.
  4. Martin A. Pearce
    Martin A. Pearce, Ian Jarvis, Andrew R. H. Swan, Amanda M. Murphy, Bruce A. Tocher and W. Michael Edmunds, 2003. Integrating palynological and geochemical data in a new approach to palaeoecological studies: Upper Cretaceous of the Banterwick Barn Chalk borehole, Berkshire, UK. Marine Micropaleontology, 47 (3-4), 271-306.
  5. Daniela N. Schmidt (University of Bristol)
    Schmidt, D.N., Thierstein, H.R., Bollmann, J. and Schiebel, R., 2004. Abiotic Forcing of Plankton Evolution in the Cenozoic. Science, 303, 207-210.
  6. Samantha J. Gibbs (National Oceanography Centre)
    Gibbs, S. J., Young, J. R., Bralower, T. J. & Shackleton, N. J., 2005. Nannofossil evolutionary events in the mid-Pliocene: an assessment of the degree of synchrony in the extinctions of Reticulofenestra pseudoumbilicus and Sphenolithus abies. Palaeogeography Palaeoclimatology Palaeoecology, 217, 155-172.
  7. Eleanor Madison
    Maddison, E. J., Pike, J., Leventer, A., Dunbar, R., Brachfeld, S., Domack, E. W., Manley, P. & McClennen, C., 2006. Post-glacial seasonal diatom record of the Mertz Glacier Polynya, East Antarctica. Marine Micropaleontology, 60, 66-88.
  8. Kirsty M. Edgar (Southampton)
    Edgar, K. M., Wilson, P. A., Sexton, P. F. & Suganuma, Y. 2007. No extreme bipolar glaciation during the main Eocene calcite compensation shift, Nature 448, 908-911.
  9. Magali Schweizer (ETH)
    Schweizer M., J. Pawlowski, T. J. Kouwenhoven, J. Guiard and B. van der Zwaan, 2008. Molecular phylogeny of Rotaliida (Foraminifera) based on complete small subunit rDNA sequences. Marine Micropaleontology, 66, 233-246.
  10. Tom Dunkley-Jones (UCL)
    Dunkley Jones, T., Bown, P. R. and Pearson, P. N.  2009.  Exceptionally well preserved upper Eocene to lower Oligocene calcareous nannofossils (Prymnesiophyceae) from the Pande Formation (Kilwa Group), Tanzania. Journal of Systematic Palaeontology, 7, 359–411.
  11. Clara Bolton (Southampton) Bolton, C. T. et al.  2010.  Evolution of nutricline dynamics in the equatorial Pacific during the Late Pliocene. Paleoceanography 25, PA1207, doi:10.1029/2009PA001821
  12. Tracy Aze (Cardiff University)Aze, T., Ezard, T.H.G., Purvis, A., Coxall, H.K., Stewart, D.R.M., Wade B.S. & Pearson P.N. A phylogeny of Cenozoic macroperforate planktonic foraminifera from fossil data. Biological Reviews 86, 900–927.
  13. Phillip E. Jardine (University of Birmingham)Jardine, P.E., Harrington, G.J. & Stidham, T.A. Regional-scale spatial heterogeneity in the late Paleoceneparatropical forests of the U.S. Gulf Coast. Paleobiology, 38(1), 15–39.
  14. Lyndsey R. Fox (University of Leeds)Fox, L.R. and Wade, B.S. 2013. Systematic taxonomy of early-middle Miocene planktonic foraminifera from the Equatorial Pacific Ocean: Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Site U1338. Journal of Foraminiferal Research 43, 374-405.
  15. Katy Prentice (Imperial College London) Prentice, K., Dunkley Jones, T., Lees, J., Young, J., Bown, P., Langer, G., Fearn, S., EIMF. 2014. Trace metal (Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca) analyses of single coccoliths by Secondary Ion Mass
    Spectrometry. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 146, 90-106.
  16. Manuel Weinkauf (University Bremen) Weinkauf, M. F. G., Moller, T., Koch, M. C., Ku!era, M., 2014. Disruptive selection and bet-hedging in planktonic Foraminifera: Shell morphology as predictor of extinctions. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 2, 64. doi: 10.3389/fevo.2014.00064.
  17. Sam Slater (University of Sheffield) Slater, S.M. and Wellman, C.H. 2015. A quantitative comparison of dispersed spore/pollen and plant megafossil assemblages from a Middle Jurassic plant bed from Yorkshire, UK. Paleobiology 41(4) 640-660.
  18. Isabel Fenton (Natural History Museum, London) Fenton IS, Pearson PN, Dunkley Jones T, Farnsworth A, Lunt DJ, Markwick P, Purvis A. The impact of Cenozoic cooling on assemblage diversity in planktonic foraminifera. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B, 371, 20150224.

Honorary Membership

Honorary Members

Honorary membership will be offered to those individuals who have, in the view of the committee, made an outstanding and sustained contribution to the Society. Honorary Members receive all the benefits of normal membership of the Society free of charge for life.

Dr Ronald L. Austin
Dr Robert Lundin
Prof. Brian M. Funnell +
Prof. J.W. Neale +
Prof. Bernard Owens
Dr Alan C. Higgins +
Prof. Robin Whatley
Prof. John Murray
Dr John Whittaker
Prof. Malcolm Hart
Dr Jim Riding
Prof. David Siveter
Dr Haydon Bailey

+ = deceased

Student Awards

In order to support the teaching of micropalaeontology at all BSc, MSc and equivalent levels, as well as to encourage and reward student engagement and achievement in this field, The Micropalaeontological Society announces the establishment of TMS Student Awards.

Each award consists of 1 year free membership in the Society, including two issues of Journal of Micropalaeontology and Newsletter of Micropalaeontology, discount on TMS and GSPH publications, discounted registration fees at TMS specialist group meetings, eligibility for awards and grants-in-aid.

The awards are given annually by tutors of micropalaeontology courses. Only one award per year per institution may be given. Nominating tutors must be members of TMS and they must send a brief description of the course to TMS Secretary, who will confirm in writing that the given course is approved for the award. The Secretary will keep a list of registered micropalaeontology courses, conferring with the Committee when necessary. Course tutors of registered courses may then give the award at any time of the year on the basis of any criteria to students deemed to have achieved meritorious grades. The tutor reports the name and address of the awardee, as well as a brief statement on the criteria used to select the awardee, to the Secretary, who will collate a list of citations to be tabled each year at the AGM and printed in the Newsletter.

Information for Tutors: In order to register a micropalaeontology course at your institute, please fill in the form and send to Secretary. You only need to do this once, unless the course has changed or you wish to report a different course for the award scheme. Tutors are welcome to submit the form electronically.

Approved courses to date:


Recipients of TMS Student Awards



  • Jessica Berry – Cardiff University
  • Jack Bonnewell – University of Leicester
  • Shaan Heydenrych – Keele University
  • Luke Meade – University of Birmingham
  • Anna Winterberg – Universität Bremen
  • Denisa Cretu – RHUL/NHM
  • Femke Augustijns – Ghent University / KU Leuven


  • Sebastian Scorrer – Cardiff University
  • Alastair Hodgetts – University of Leicester
  • Janina Bösche – Universität Bremen
  • Michael Sims – University of Southampton
  • Leanne Herron – University of Glasgow
  • Sofia Schiavo, Gareth Coleman – University of Bristol
  • William Hiles – RHUL/NHM
  • Mark Sutherland – Keele University
  • Cameron Henderson – University of Portsmouth
  • Joshua Hedge – University of Birmingham
  • Lise Martens – Ghent University / KU Leuven
  • Elise Wallet – University of Lille
  • Dipankar Buragohain – Jadavpur University


  • Katharine Acheson – University of Southampton
  • Sandra de Castro – Universidad del País Vasco
  • John Crowe – Cardiff University
  • Charlotte Fielder – University of Portsmouth
  • James Foey – University of Keele
  • Jonathan Hall – University of Leicester
  • William Hiles – Royal Holloway, University of London
  • Kate Newton – University of Birmingham
  • Runa Reuter – Universität Bremen
  • Anna Turlewicz – University of Glasgow
  • Matthias Troch – Ghent University / KU Leuven
  • Jessica Crumpton-Banks – University of Bristol


  • Nicholas Poole – Cardiff University
  • Deborah Fish – University of Leicester
  • Ryan Marek – University of Bristol
  • Ryan Kingsley – Keele University
  • Barbara Casas – Universidad del País Vasco
  • Benjamin Man – University of Birmingham
  • Anne Strack – Universität Bremen
  • Niall Shute – University of Portsmouth
  • Ruairidh Salmon – University of Glasgow
  • Katleen Wils – University of Ghent / KU Leuven


  • Simon Jost – IFM-GEOMAR, Kiel
  • Christopher Stocker – University of Leicester
  • Tamsin Leaver – University of Southampton
  • Rachel Dunn – University of Bristol
  • David Cox – Keele University
  • Victor Ruiz-Gonzalez – Universidad del País Vasco
  • Georgina Wright – University of Birmingham
  • Rik Van Bael – University of Ghent / KU Leuven
  • Gauthier Hainaut – University of Lille
  • Daniela Röhnert – Universität Bremen
  • May Fitzgibbon – University of Glasgow


  • Gerallt Hughes – Cardiff University
  • Megan Williams – University of Leicester
  • Thomas Goode – University of Southampton (in Memory of Brian O’Neill)
  • Richard Ott – Universität Tübingen
  • Mar Alonso – Universidad del País Vasco/EHU
  • Hayley Wilkinson – University of Birmingham
  • Edward Pizzey – University of Bristol
  • Ellen Margaret Foster – Keele University
  • Robbie Moore – University of Plymouth
  • Assad Ghazwani – King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals

  • Thomas Steeman – University of Ghent / KU Leuven


  • Tim Collart (University of Ghent / KU Leuven)
  • Mar Alonso (Universidad del País Vasco)
  • Christopher Duffield (University of Plymouth)
  • Anna Mikis (Cardiff University) -this award was made in memory of Brian O?Neill.
  • Ann-Sophie Jonas (Kiel)
  • Claire Howell (Keele University)
  • Eder Amayuelas (Universidad del País Vasco)
  • Jochen Fuss (Universität Tübingen)
  • James Wiltshire (University of Southampton)
  • Annabel Hodge (University of Bristol)
  • Thomas Lawrence (University of Plymouth)


  • Phillip Munz (Universität Tübingen)
  • Robert Bucki (University of Birmingham)
  • Miryam Torrontegui Aguado (Universidad del País Vasco)
  • Andrew Leighton (University of Plymouth) – this award was made in memory of Brian O’Neill.
  • Ross Pettigrew (Keele University)
  • Isabel Gilbert (University of Bristol)
  • Andrew Preddy (Cardiff University)
  • David Button (University of Leicester)
  • Cederic Van Renterghem (University of Ghent / KU Leuven)


  • Ane García Artola (Universidad del País Vasco)
  • Adam Jeffrey (Keele University)
  • Ben Slater (University of Bristol)
  • Kayleigh Mills (Cardiff University)
  • Gemma Tongue (University of Leicester)
  • Sam Bradley (University of Southampton)
  • Ulrike Baranowski (Universität Tübingen)
  • Marion Kuhs (University of Birmingham)
  • Elien De Pelsmaeker (University of Ghent / KU Leuven)


  • Scott Butler (Cardiff University)
  • Iain Graham (University of Leicester)
  • Felix Marx (University of Bristol)
  • Johanna Schweers (Kiel)
  • Ben Thuy (Universität Tübingen)
  • Debbie Wall-Palmer (University of Plymouth)
  • Jenny Warner (University of Southampton)

TMS Annual Conference Travel Bursaries

Multiple TMS travel grants of up to £100 are available to support postgraduate students and early career researchers (those who have completed their PhD within the last 5 yrs) to attend the TMS Annual Conference held in November each year. This grant can only be used to contribute towards travel and accommodation costs. Successful grant candidates must be presenting at the conference (oral or poster presentation). Please complete the application form below and return to the Events Secretary ( before the 30th September in the year of the AGM that you wish to attend. Candidates will be notified of the status of their application in in early October.


Grants-in-Aid are awarded annually to help student members and early career researchers (within 10 years of obtaining their last degree) of the Society in their fieldwork, conference attendance, or any other specific activity related to their research which has not been budgeted for. Grants-in-Aid can not be awarded for miscellaneous expenditure, neither can they be awarded retrospectively. The proposed activity must take place in the calendar year commencing the 1st April following the application deadline in February.

  • A maximum of £500 can be awarded to each successful applicant.
  • Awardees are expected to write a short report for the Newsletter once their grant has been used.
  • For more information, please contact the Secretary.
  • The deadline for applications is the 28th February.
  • Download the application form here:

TMS Educational Trust Awards

More info TMS Educational Trust Awards. This trust offers finacncial support for post-graduate training in micropalaeontology.

TMS Small Research Grant

An application form is available on the TMS Small Research Grant.

TMS Urbino Scholarship Application Form

An application form is available on the TMS Educational Trust Awards.