SIG Awards

Awards are used to recognize outstanding technical achievement and individual contribution to the field of computer science generally, and to the technical areas of the Special Interest Groups.

SIGs often sponsor a number of awards. Many SIGs honor seminal or continuing contributions to their technical fields, either a specific contribution or contributions over a career. SIGs also recognize the contribution of time and talent to the SIG and/or to the field generally through distinguished service awards.

A conference series or the SIG may name one or more best papers at a conference, and many now honor a paper from the conference ten years prior for its influence and contribution to the technical field. In addition, some conferences honor the best paper with a student as primary author.

Creating a New Award

All ACM awards must be approved by the SIG Governing Board (SGB) prior to being submitted to the ACM Awards Committee. Normally, a SIG approves the creation of a new award through action by its Executive Committee. Awards generally can be categorized as merit, service, or paper awards. For more detailed information on ACM Awards, including definitions, considerations, and procedures for creating them, see Policies and Guide to Establishing an ACM Award.

Prior to being submitted to the SGB Governing Board, all requirements for the award must be in place: the name of the award and statement of criteria for giving it, the processes for nomination and selection, frequency of the award, the form of the award (certificate, travel support, honorarium, etc.), and funding for the award.

There are additional requirements in creating a named award that must be followed scrupulously.  Please see "Named Awards" below.   The funding for a named award should be endowed.

The requirement for face-to-face discussion in both the ACM Awards Committee and ACM Council of the appropriateness of the award limits consideration of named awards to the annual meeting of the ACM Awards Committee (usually in June).

Your SIG Program Coordinator can provide you with an award proposal template as well as guidance on the process.  

Named Awards

An award is a "named award" when the name of the award honors a real person, whether living or deceased. The named award can be a SIG-sponsored award, or can be proposed through the SIG as an ACM-wide award.

There are very careful procedures involved in proposing a named award, set in place to maximize the honor involved with a named award, and to respect the privacy and feelings of the individual and family.

ACM named awards, including prizes and grants, convey special distinction and require additional justification for approval. Both the merit of the award in the ACM context and the appropriateness of the proposed name will be scrutinized carefully. (See Named Awards, the last section on Policies and Guide to Establishing an ACM Award).

Procedures are set out in that section for putting together the proposal and support for a named award. These procedures need to be followed very exactly. Final approval does not come for a named award until action by the ACM Council, and public announcement of the award should be avoided until that approval is given. Both the ACM Awards Committee and ACM Council review and consider named awards in closed, face-to-face sessions.

Steps in Creating New Awards

  1. SIG Leader proposes award and secures endorsement from the SIG Executive Committee sponsoring award;
  2. Award proposal and all relevant documents are forwarded from SIG Chair with the endorsement from the SIG EC to Director of SIG Services;
  3. Award proposal is sent to SGB EC Secretary for review and input;
  4. SGB EC Secretary forwards the proposal to the SGB EC for review and input with the endorsement of the SGB EC Secretary;
  5. SGB EC Secretary forwards the proposal to the SGB with the endorsement from the SGB EC;
  6. SGB votes/comments on award;
  7. SGB EC Secretary forwards to the SGB Awards liaison with the endorsement from the SGB and the SGB EC;
  8. SGB Awards liaison forwards to the Awards Committee for approval
  9. If a named award, Awards Committee forwards to ACM Council for approval

Awards proposals should be submitted by March 15th, September 15th, and December 15th.


SIG Award Templates

When your SIG plans to award certificates of recognition, you may use these templates.