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Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering

Instructions to Referees – Form 140

Before Proceeding

Please read  Instructions to Referees on the Privacy Act, Confidentiality and the Use and Disclosure of Information.

Note: Your signature on the paper version of the review form, or transmission of your final evaluation to NSERC either by mail or by using the electronic evaluation process, means that you have read these instructions and that you consent to these uses and disclosures.

In addition, you may refer to:

Information on the following topics is provided below:

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Conflict of Interest

If you are in a conflict of interest or for any other reason unable to act as a referee, please contact us directly or send us an e-mail at referee.herzberg@nserc-crsng.gc.ca as soon as possible. In order to identify yourself and the application(s) you are unable to review to NSERC, please indicate your Personal Identification Number and the application number in the SUBJECT line of the electronic message followed by your message.

Suggested referees should not be in a conflict of interest. Refer to the This link will take you to another Web site Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Policy of the Federal Research Funding Organizations for more information. In addition, referees (external reviewers) must sign the This link will take you to another Web site Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Agreement for Review Committee Members, External Reviewers, and Observers before they access the application material.

Allegations of Misconduct

Allegations of misconduct must be treated separately from the peer review process. Should your review reveal concerns of possible misconduct, please report any allegation separately to the Research Ethics Coordinator. Your report should only address the application and selection criteria and make no mention of the misconduct concerns.

How to Evaluate the Nomination

The selection committee for this prestigious award is a multidisciplinary group of distinguished scientists and engineers and relies heavily on the opinions of external referees in reaching a final decision on each nominated team. Therefore, when preparing your appraisal, please bear in mind that you are writing to non-specialists. The selection committee would greatly benefit from specific as well as general comments about the recent achievement(s) for which the team is nominated.

The NSERC Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering is awarded for both the sustained excellence and overall influence of a body of work conducted in Canada in the natural sciences or engineering. The nominee's work must demonstrate a high degree of expertise, creativity, imagination, leadership, perseverance and dedication.

The nominations should be reviewed on the basis of contributions to the areas of the natural sciences or engineering served by NSERC. Please consult the NSERC Guidelines for the Preparation and Review of Applications in Engineering and the Applied Sciences.

Nominations will include:

  1. A brief description of the nominator’s background;
  2. A letter or document that describes the nominee's achievements and how they relate to one or more of the following categories:
    • contributions to knowledge;
    • the use of existing knowledge to develop novel solutions to practical problems;
    • the successful promotion or management of research activities;
    • leadership in the transfer of knowledge;
    • the training of highly qualified personnel;
    • other appropriate contributions;
    • the significance, benefit or impact of the nominee’s achievements; and
    • the role of the nominee in bringing about the achievements.

    The letter should highlight the nominee’s most significant scientific contributions by referring to the list of contributions included in the nominee’s curriculum vitae.
  3. The nominee's up-to-date curriculum vitae, which should include detailed information about the contributions and achievements described in the above categories, e.g., lists of works published, highly qualified personnel trained. The curriculum vitae should contain relevant information over the entire career of the nominee.

In assessing the merits of the nomination, please comment on the following:

  1. The breadth, significance, benefit or impact of the nominee's achievement(s) as related to the following categories (where applicable):
    • contribution to knowledge in the nominee’s field and beyond;
    • the use of existing knowledge to develop novel solutions to practical problems;
    • the successful promotion or management of research activity;
    • leadership in the transfer of knowledge;
    • the training of highly qualified personnel; and
    • other appropriate contributions.
  2. The role of the nominee in bringing about the achievement(s);
  3. Compare the nominee with international peers and recognized stars in the field; and
  4. In cases where the nominee has made contributions in areas other than the Natural Sciences and Engineering (NSE), such as the medical or social sciences, comment on the importance of the contributions in the NSE relative to the impact of contributions in other disciplines.
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