FAQs

Q: Who is eligible?
A: The goal of the award is to raise awareness of the amazing work women researchers are doing in robotics.  The award is open to researchers who identify as women.  The nominees must have made a recognized impact in the field of robotics. There are two categories, The Robotics Medal and Rising Star. The Robotics Medal is specifically targeting a significant and accomplished researcher. The Rising Star targets early career researchers to watch in the future. 

Q: If I don’t have a Gmail account, how do I nominate?
A: It is prefered you make a gmail account, if this is not possible, please fill out PDF application and send it to award@massrobotics.org.

Q: Will you accept multiple nominations from the same school or department?
A: Yes, there is no limit per department. In fact, the more nominations, the better. We want to highlight all the great work being done. 

Q: Can faculty or staff nominate someone from their own department?
A: Yes.

Q: Can students be nominated for this award or is it for established, accomplished researchers?
A: The Rising Star was established specifically for early career researchers. We will accept nominations for postdocs, associate professors, professors and others. Nominations for The Robotics Medal are for accomplished and senior researchers who have made a significant impact in the field of robotics.

Q: Can I self-nominate?
A: Yes, as long as you complete the application requirements including two letters of support.

Q: Will the prize money be awarded to a school, company or the individual researcher?
A:  The funds will be provided directly to the winning researcher. The winner must provide a completed Form W-9, Request for Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) and Certification. The winners will receive a Form 1099-MISC from MassRobotics.

Q: When are nominations open, and when are they due?
A: Nominations for the 2024 recipients are currently open and must be submitted with all required attachments by December 20th 2023. 

Q: What is required for a nomination?
A:The nominator must provide the nominee’s CV, summary citation (100 words), up to 3 page full citation and 2-3 letters of recommendation.

 

Guidelines on Conflict of Interest for the MassRobotics Awards Committee

Conflict of interest (COI) is generally recognized as a situation where there is risk that a professional judgment or decision could be influenced by some secondary interest. In the context of MassRobotics award committees, COI derives from a committee member’s relationship with a nominee and/or affiliation with a nominee’s institution. Members of the award committee avoid the appearance of any impropriety by adhering to the following guidelines.

  1. Award committee members do not serve as nominator or endorser for any nomination submitted for any award. This includes any member of the MassRobotics Board of Directors, Advisory Board or staff.
  2. Members of the award committee are not eligible for the award during their term of committee service. When agreeing to serve on the award committee, you should understand that if you were to be nominated, the nomination would be disqualified. Persons preparing nominations should be advised that committee members are not eligible.
  3. Members of the MassRobotics award committee should not be directly involved in nominations prior to their submittal. You can answer general questions about what a nomination should include, but you should not pre-review or comment on draft nominations. It is normal for the committee as a group to develop a list of potential candidates and a committee member may be asked to contact a potential nominator, but such communications should be kept general in nature so that they cannot be construed as assistance or raise expectations about the outcome.
  4. Members of the MassRobotics award committee maintain confidentiality about the internal discussions of the committee. Information about committee deliberations should not be shared with anyone outside the committee, nor should the winner be discussed until MassRobotics has issued a formal press release.
  5. Members of the MassRobotics award committee do not provide feedback to unsuccessful candidates. If a member is asked for feedback, this policy should be cited. On rare occasions, and with the approval of the committee, the chair may contact a nominator to encourage/discourage future re-nomination of a particular candidate. In such cases, feedback should be limited to general information about elements of the package that made the case weak (e.g., overreliance on endorsements from the same institution as the candidate/nominator, endorsements that just reiterate the nomination without providing new insight, or candidates whose accomplishments are not a good fit for the award). Note that it is not appropriate to offer evaluative comments on the candidate’s qualifications or specific endorsements. The committee is under no obligation to provide feedback for any candidate, and it must be made clear that responding to the suggestions will not necessarily result in future success.
  6. Members of the award committee self-identify any relationships/affiliations that might be perceived as a source of potential bias and inform the committee chair of the COIs before any candidates have been discussed. Identify any candidates with whom you have had close personal or working relationships within the past four years, anyone for whom you were thesis advisor/advisee, or any other case where your judgment could be affected. Also identify any candidates from your current institution or one where you worked within the past four years.
  7. If COIs are identified, the conflicted committee members will recuse themselves from discussions related to the corresponding nominations. Recusal means that the committee member will refrain from any commentary/input regarding the conflicted nomination before or during the decision-making process and will absent him/herself during committee discussions of the conflicted nomination. When the chair has a COI with a nomination, the deputy chair will manage the discussion of that nomination.