Nominations for the 2021 Communications Award will open in summer.
For a list of previous winners, scroll down.
Purpose of the Award
The Communications Award, established under the vision of ASTMH Past President Claire Panosian, MD, DTMH (London), FASTMH, recognizes excellence in tropical medicine storytelling through the written word. The goal of the award, which is selected by a Committee, is to recognize content that enhances the public's understanding and appreciation of tropical medicine research, clinical practice and/or policy. Entries are judged on scientific accuracy, initiative, originality, clarity of interpretation and value in fostering a better understanding of the field of tropical medicine by non-science audiences.
Nomination, Eligibility and Judging
- Eligible: Articles published by a news media outlet, including newspapers, popular magazines and TV news websites, are eligible along with stories broadcast by recognized TV and radio news outlets, and documentaries produced for TV or other public distribution. (Please Note: The New York Times prohibits its reporters from entering any competition hosted by an organization "with a direct interest in the tenor of Times coverage.")
- Not eligible: Books, studies from scientific journals, blogs, or videos on websites or YouTube.
- Eligible works must be in English and published or released on or after July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2020.
- Only a single article or documentary is eligible. Series will not be accepted for review; however, a single article from a series may be submitted for judging as standalone work.
- Nominators may submit a maximum of three nominations.
- ASTMH welcomes self-nominations. ASTMH members and non-members may also submit nominations.
- A committee consisting of at least three scientists and two professional science journalists and/or communications experts will determine the winners. The author(s) of the winning entry will be notified in September.
- The Committee reserves the right to recognize distinguished nominees.
Complete the online nomination form, when available. The form must include a PDF or Word file of print publications or an active (not password-protected) link to the nominated work. The form may be submitted by a representative of the nominator (e.g., an administrative assistant).
Please Note: In cases where there are multiple authors for a nominated work, please list the names of all the authors in the box provided. Be sure to list the lead author first.
Contact Doug Dusik, ASTMH Senior Manager, Communications
William Brangham, Jon Cohen and Jason Kane
“Why a Kenyan island may teach the world how to beat AIDS”
"A Plague of Rats"
Kevin Sack, Sheri Fink, Pam Belluck, Adam Nossiter and Celia Dugger (editor)*
The New York Times
"How Ebola Roared Back"
*declined the award due to The New York Times policy
"The Art of Eradicating Polio"
Shelly Xie - for her unique sand art performance on neglected tropical disease
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
"The Scourge of the Superbugs"
- for overall excellence in reporting tropical medicine and hygiene news
"The Burden of Thirst"
Wall Street Journal
“Gates Rethinks His War on Polio”
Donald McNeil, Jr.
New York Times
“At Front Lines, AIDS War is Falling Apart”
"Death in Birth"
“Path of a Pandemic”
The Globe and Mail
“Why Are Millions Starving in a Booming India?”
Charles Piller and Doug Smith
Los Angeles Times
"Unintended Victims of Gates Foundation Generosity"
New England Journal of Medicine
“A New Attack on Malaria”
“Sex and the Single Schistosome”
The Washington Post
“Breaking the Cycle”
“The Challenge of Global Health”
“Welcome to Ethiopia’s Fly Factory”
“The Ethiopia Campaign”
Celia Dugger and Donald McNeil*
The New York Times
“On the Brink”
*declined the award per The New York Times policy
The Boston Globe
“Life Stories Part 1 and 2: Outlasting AIDS in Africa”
The New Yorker Magazine
“What Money Can Buy. Millions of Africans die needlessly of diseases each year. Can Bill Gates change that?”
“Combating the Bird Flu Menace, Down on the Farm”
“Rotavirus Vaccines’ Second Chance”
Jennifer Bails and Luis Fabregas
Pittsburgh Tribune Review
“An Unfinished Miracle”