Awards Structure and Guidance Statement

Mid‐Continent Regional Science Association
Awards Structure and Guidance Statement


The Immediate Past President chairs the Awards Committee with two At Large members of the Association. The committee issues a call for nominations on February 1 of a given year to be distributed by the Executive Director via the MCRSA listserv. All nominations are to go to the Immediate Past President.

The Past President leads a process by the committee to evaluate the merits of the nomination(s) received. Upon completion of the evaluation, the chair forwards recommendations to the Board of Directors by April 15. The final determination of award confirmation is made by the Board of Directors by May 1 of a given year.

Only one category would be considered an automatic award. That award would go to the outgoing President for leadership service to MCRSA. For all other categories, it would be the intent that the threshold of merit be high so as to protect the meaning and integrity of the conference of the award on behalf of MCRSA.

A nomination for any award can be made on behalf of another or oneself. A statement of justification and, as appropriate, evidence must accompany any nomination. Any member of the Awards Committee may make a nomination.

Guidance: The Past President is responsible for soliciting At Large committee participation. The Past President should consider members based on both MCRSA participation longevity and institutional memory, and overall knowledge with and involvement in the general discipline of regional science and analysis. Past and current members of the MCRSA Board of Directors are eligible to participate.

Award winners need not be present at the annual conference to have been conferred an award. However, award winners will be notified in advance and will be strongly encouraged to be in attendance to receive recognition. At the Board’s discretion, an award may be withheld until such time as the recipient can be in attendance.

Award Categories

Jarvin Emerson Student Paper Competition: This award is open to any student enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate degree program as of January 1 in the year of the upcoming annual conference. The winner of the Student Paper Competition will receive a $1,000 prize to attend the MCRSA Annual Conference to present the paper. The winning entry will also be published in the Association’s The Journal of Regional Analysis & Policy.

Guidance: The MCRSA Vice President is responsible for soliciting participation in the student paper competition and forming a review committee to judge the entries. The Editor(s) of JRAP is/are part of the committee. The Vice President will solicit two qualified At Large members of the Association to assist with the review. The winning entry must be deemed sufficiently innovative so as to be publishable with or without revision in the judgment of the Editor. Conference of the award is not to be deemed automatic in a given year, but is bestowed only for a highly meritorious entry.

MCRSA Leadership Award: This award is given to the outgoing President in recognition of multiple years’ service in the leadership rotation. Previously, this had been called the Distinguished Service Award.

MCRSA Distinguished Service Award: The Distinguished Service Award is intended to replace what had been called the Founder’s Award. This is the Association’s award for outstanding service to the Association.

The Distinguished Service Award would recognize exceptionally meritorious and sustained service on behalf of MCRSA. It is intended to pay homage to those who pursue a vision of a sustainable, healthy and vibrant Association.

Guidance: The Distinguished Service Award would recognize sustained service over and above that which requires simple acknowledgement. This might include a JRAP Editor who has served for five or 10 years in the roll. It might include a member who has served multiple terms within leadership over many years of active participation. There should also be room allocated for the individual who has been truly “Exceptional.” This is a long‐time member of the Association who has consistently and repeatedly done service in a sustained fashion and a multiplicity of roles. Examples include a person who has performed leadership, served as Editor or Associate Editor of JRAP, represented the Association to broader interests and organizations, striven to bring more members into the Association, and who otherwise has done other good and valuable service on behalf of the Association in its mission to advance Regional Science. In unique cases, the award could be termed a “Special Distinguished Service Award.”

Early Career Award: This is for an active MCRSA member with less than ten years post Ph.D. professional experience.

Guidance: The Early Career Award is intended to recognize newer members of the Association who have made significant contributions to the Association and the discipline of Regional Science. This could also be a newer member who has been active in serving on Association committees, organizing sessions for the annual meetings, or a editing a special issue of JRAP.

Research Impact Award: Outstanding JRAP article (up to the editors and could go back some number of years).  The JRAP Editor will propose standards, a selection process, and threshold criteria for this award. This award nomination may only be made by the Editor of JRAP.

Distinguished Fellow: Member in good standing and history of MCRSA support and participation that has made significant contributions to the broader discipline of Regional Science.

Individuals with particularly outstanding records of scholarship, service to the profession, and participation within the Association in the advancement of regional analysis and related fields of study may be elected as a Fellow of the Association by the Board of Directors. The position of Fellow is an honorary position of the Association in recognition of the achievements and contributions of the selected individuals. The number of Fellows elected at any time shall be at the discretion of the Board.

Guidance: The threshold would be a person with 10 or more years’ involvement with the Association and who has had a clear and compelling impact on the discipline of Regional Science. Factors considered should be tenure and continuing involvement in MCRSA, research productivity, impact of research within the broader discipline of Regional Science, ongoing productivity, impact of students trained, and testimonials from colleagues and former students.