Award Guidelines

Award Guidelines

Award Guidelines Approved at the 1998 C-8 Business Meeting:

(from the C-8 section of CROP SCIENCE Journal)

A. Status: Special committee

B. Composition: The voting committee shall be composed of 7 to 10 active CSSA members developed from the following pool: past and present C-8 chairs; past and present TEs and AEs for C8; past and present Board representatives from C-8; past and present presidents of CSSA; the Crop Science editor and editor in chief; USDA-ARS national program leaders (NPL) for plant germplasm. In addition to the pool above, up to three committee members may be selected from the CSSA C-8 membership at large as needed. The committee shall strive to have at least one member of the committee from the private sector. Authors with a paper under consideration foraward are not eligible to vote in the award process.

C. Tenure: The term of service is two years for committee members. The Awards committee chair serves a one year term appointed by the C-8 chair. New committee members are selected each year from the pool above by the C-8 chair. The C-8 chair may, at his/her discretion, delegate this responsibility to the Awards chair. In the second year of service, a committee member is excused if he/she has a C-8 paper under consideration for the award. A new committee will be appointed to replace the excused member as needed.

D. Functions:
1. Selects outstanding papers in Crop Science from the previous calendar year in accordance with AwardGuidelines. The procedures followed are focused through the committee Chair, whose duties are as follows:

  • a. Serves as a voting member of the committee. If the chair has published a paper in the C-8 section of Crop Science in the year under consideration, the chair may either be excused from voting or alternatively disqualify his/her paper from consideration.
  • b. Coordinates the Award process.
  • c. Advises all committee members on the scoring and ranking procedure to be followed as well as any other special instructions.
  • d. Constructs the ballot, coordinates the voting, tabulates the returns, and informs committee members of the results.
  • e. Submits results from the committee’s selection process to the C-8 chair including the ballots of the committee.
  • f. Collects biographical information on award recipients. This material is to be used by Headquarters Office and C-8 officers for publicity on the award recipients. Drafts a press release for Agronomy News.
  • g. Present or Announce the Award at the C-8 business meeting.

2. May recommend changes or revisions relative to criteria, description, selection process of recipients, etc. for this award. All recommendations must be approved by majority vote at the annual C-8 business meeting. Recommendations shall be submitted to the C-8 chair in writing.

E. C-8 chair’s responsibility to the committee: In addition to selection of the award committee chair and its members, the C-8 chair shall advise, in writing, the corresponding authors of those papers selected for the award.

F. Award Guidelines:

1. DESCRIPTION OF THE AWARD: The Outstanding Papers In Plant Genetic Resources Award is designed to honor members of the plant genetic resources community who have made important contributions to the study of genetic diversity though basic and applied research. The award consists of a certificate for each author.

2. AWARD CRITERIA: Scientific merit, innovation, and promotion of the use of exotic genetic resources for the public good. Discovery of novel agronomic traits or novel agronomic genes among exotic germplasm by classical or molecular methods; statistical or molecular methods for quantifying genetic diversity; methods to improve germplasm regeneration and storage; new approaches in the study of genetic diversity. Writing style is not necessarily a major consideration.

3. ELIGIBILITY OF PAPERS: Any C-8 paper published in Crop Science for the previous calendar year except germplasm, cultivar, or stock registrations. Review and interpretation articles are eligible if clearly C-8 in nature and will be added to the ballot prior to committee votes.

4. ELIGIBILITY OF AUTHORS. All authors are eligible regardless of CSSA membership status.

5. SCORING OR RANKING PROCEDURE. The committee accepts the task of carefully reviewing all eligible C-8 papers in Crop Science for the appropriate year, including review and interpretation articles. Subsequently, each committee member nominates exactly five articles for the award. Nominations are tallied and each article is ranked by the number of nominations received.

The number of articles to receive the award will be based on the number of papers under consideration and may vary each year. The goal will be to declare the top 10% of the papers as recipients. The number of awards will be calculated by the following: Number of Awards = (number of papers considered) x 0.10 and truncated to the whole number. For example, 39 papers under consideration for a given year would result in approximately 3.9 or 3 Award papers.

6. TIES AND DEADLOCKED COMMITTEE: In the event of a tie for the last paper to be declared winner, all tie papers will be included in the Award, even when the total number of Award papers is numerically greater than 10.0%.


1. The C-8 chair must announce the Award chair for the next year at the annual C-8 business meeting of the Crop Science Society. The C-8 chair, or his/her designee (the Award Committee chair), shall form the Awards selection committee by February 15.

2. Award winners must be selected by May 1. The Award committee chair must notify the C-8 chair at that time.

3. The C-8 chair must notify the corresponding author of each Award paper by September 1.

4. The Award committee chair must have written biographical information on winners available for the C-8 chair and draft Awards announcement for the Agronomy News at the annual C-8 business meeting.

5. Any proposed changes in the Award by the Award chair must be submitted to the C-8 chair in advance of the annual C-8 business meeting.