ABSW Awards 2019: winners

British science journalist of the year

Joint winners:

Catherine Brahic, Science correspondent at The Economist

The judges said: "Catherine showed great range in reporting, writing, and editing. We were impressed with the unique topics and how the reporter’s curiosity exposed readers to new places and new ideas."

Katia Moskvitch, Business and space editor, Wired UK, CondeNast

The judges said: "Katia showed great range and depth in reporting, seeking out different angles and bringing something new to readers. The judges really enjoyed reading their work." 

Editor of the year

Amit Katwala, Freelance Editor, Professional Engineering

The judges said: "The magazine this editor recently relaunched is so well produced and compelling, it deserves a far wider audience."

The Steve Connor Award for investigative journalism

Team entry: Madlen Davies, Rahul Meesaraganda and Ben Stockton: A game of chicken: How Indian poultry farming is creating global superbugs. 

First published on The Bureau of Investigative Journalism website, and subsequently in The Times, The Lancet Journal of Infectious Diseases and The Hindu.

The judges said: "A tremendous amount of thorough work in a potentially life-saving investigation."

Feature of the year – general

Hal Hodson: The network within, the network without. 

First published in The Economist.

The judges said: "Utterly gripping, a strong human element and equally strong science to back it up."

Feature of the year – specialist

Alex Riley (freelance): How a wooden bench in Zimbabwe is starting a revolution in mental health.

First published by Mosaic, Wellcome

The judges said: "Beautifully written with strong characters, full of hope and constantly surprising."

News item of the year

Hannah Devlin: Scientists set to grow miniature brains using Neanderthal DNA. 

First published in The Guardian

The judges said: "We were absolutely blown away by this amazing idea; it was completely exclusive and original."

The Royal Society Radio Prize

Team entry: Producer – Jim Taylor, Presenter - Anna Foster, Multi-media Producer - Nick Garnett, Assistant Editor - Clare Fordham. BBC Radio 5 Live Women of Nasa 

Three hour live outside broadcast on BBC Radio 5 Live.

The judges said: "They gave their unique voice to many aspects of complex science and engineering, and to women’s involvement, but with a refreshing lightness of touch."

Scripted or edited TV programme or online video of the year

Team entry: Video producer - Jennifer Green, Animator - Jules Bartl, Voice-over/scripting - Marnie Chesterton: How trees secretly talk to each other

First broadcast by CrowdScience (online), BBC World Service 

The judges said: "Beautiful and engaging, you really learned something new from this novel format."

Innovation of the year 

Joint winners:

Team entry: Noah Baker, George Glover, Eti Meacock, Bori Mezo: The tale of the Edith’s Checkerspot: Butterflies in an evolutionary trap. 

First broadcast by Nature (online). Behind the scenes video exploring how the film was made.

The judges said: "They used a novel form of illustration that made the understanding of this story effortless, it was gorgeous and stunning showing that art and science can truly merge."

Team entry: Science Editor - Robert McSweeney, Multimedia Journalist - Rosamund Pearce, Digital Content Manager – Thomas Harrisson, Junior Content Producer – Tom Prater: The impacts of climate change at 1.5C, 2C and beyond.  

First published by Carbon Brief (online). 

The judges said: "They put the terrifying truth about global warming at everyone’s fingertips – really smart and useful."

The NUJ Stephen White Award for communication and reporting of science in a non-science context 

Clive Cookson: Scientists discover the origins of gold in space. 

First published in the Financial Times Watches & Jewellery Special Report

The judges said: "A beautifully written and brilliant piece of science journalism where you would least expect to find it."

The Dr Katharine Giles science blog award (supported by the Dr Katharine Giles Fund). 

Team entry: PhD Students - Mark Kearney, Arendse Lund, Josephine Mills and Anna Pokorska: UCL Researchers in Museums Blog

The judges said: A fresh, fun and innovative approach from this academic team.

Newcomer of the Year

Mary Halton, Assistant Editor TED Conferences/Freelance, for work first published by BBC News online

The judges said: "A great eye for stories on a variety of topics that were well-researched and told from a variety of angles."

Student science journalist of the year

Kirstin Leslie, University of Glasgow: Digital pills: Big Data or Big Brother? 

First published in theGIST

The judges said: "Thoroughly engaging writing about their own research subject which is difficult to do so successfully."

Science under the microscope award

Quirin Schiermeier: Climate as Culprit

First published in Nature

The judges said: "Linking climate with extreme weather is so important and this story uncovered the people doing exactly this."

Lifetime achievement award

Sir Philip Campbell, Editor-in-Chief Springer Nature

The Association of British Science Writers is registered in England and Wales under company number 07376343 at 76 Glebe Lane, Barming, Maidstone, Kent, ME16 9BD.
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