Benjamin Franklin Medals - Nominations

The Franklin Institute invites you to nominate candidates for the Benjamin Franklin Medals, presented in the following seven disciplines of science and engineering:
  • Chemistry
  • Civil and Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer and Cognitive Science
  • Earth and Environmental Science
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Life Science
  • Physics

Interdisciplinary awards will also be considered.

Benjamin Franklin Medalists are presented with 14-karat gold medals and honoraria of $10,000 per medal.

Deadline: None

  • Nominations are accepted at any time throughout the year.
  • The process from nomination to award typically takes a minimum of two years.
  • An award may be presented in any year beyond the two-year investigation period.


  • This is an international competition for individuals whose work has had a significant impact on the aforementioned fields of science and engineering and is not restricted by a specific theme or topic.
  • Nominees must be living, and award recipients must participate in the Awards Ceremony at which their medals are presented. Medalists are also expected to participate in additional educational and social events during Awards Week. Events take place each spring locally to The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.
  • The subject of the candidate's research must be an invention, discovery, technological development, or a body of work reflecting extraordinary insight, skill, or creativity. The work must have scientific value and/or proven utility. It must have provided significant direction for future research, solved an important problem, or provided great benefit to the public.
  • Nominations will be accepted from any individual, organization, or institution, including self-nominations. 
  • Nominations of candidates traditionally underrepresented in science and engineering are particularly encouraged. 
  • No more than three individuals may be nominated for a shared award. A significant case for the inclusion of all parties must be conveyed.
  • Sufficient submitted documentation to support further investigation must be provided by the nominator in order for the nomination to be considered.

Selection Process

  • Nominations will be forwarded to the appropriate subcommittee within The Franklin Institute’s Committee on Science and the Arts, the all-volunteer body of scientists and engineers from academia and industry who investigate medal candidates and recommend medalists to The Franklin Institute Board of Trustees. 
  • The Committee carefully selects candidates in a thorough case investigation process that typically takes a minimum of two years. 
  • The Franklin Institute Board of Trustees ratifies all medalists.
  • Medalists are typically announced in January of the year of their medal presentation.

Nomination Checklist

  • Nominations may be submitted by mail or email.
  • Nomination materials are considered confidential for a term of 50 years.
  • Nominations must be submitted in English and must include the following:
    • Medal name(s) for which nomination is being submitted
    • Name and contact information of the nominee
    • Name and contact information of nominator
    • Nominee’s curriculum vitae and bibliography of significant publications
    • Proposed citation of 50 words or fewer, highlighting the achievement(s) for which the candidate is nominated
    • A comprehensive narrative statement describing the nominee's qualifications for the award
    • Names and contact information for a minimum of five references for the nominee. These references may be contacted by The Franklin Institute during the case investigation process.

Nominations should be mailed or emailed to:

Beth Scheraga
Director, The Franklin Institute Awards
The Franklin Institute
222 North 20th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103-1194
Phone: 215.448.1329