Prizes & Awards

Margaret Mead Award

The Margaret Mead Award, offered jointly by the American Anthropological Association (AAA) and the Society for Applied Anthropology (SfAA), is presented to a younger scholar for a particular accomplishment, such as a book, film, monograph, or service, which interprets anthropological data and principles in ways that make them meaningful to a broadly concerned public. The award is designed to recognize a person clearly and integrally associated with research and/or practice in anthropology. The awardee's activity will exemplify skills in broadening the impact of anthropology -- skills for which Margaret Mead was admired widely.

Call for Nominations for Margaret Mead Award

Margaret Mead, for years among the best known women in the world, was also the best known anthropologist, with a particular talent for bringing anthropology fully into the light of public attention. The Margaret Mead Award, initiated by the Society for Applied Anthropology in 1979, and awarded jointly with the American Anthropological Society since 1983, continues to celebrate the tradition of bringing anthropology to bear on wider social and cultural issues.

The Margaret Mead Award is presented to a younger scholar for a particular accomplishment such as a book, film, monograph, or service, which interprets anthropological data and principles in ways that make them meaningful and accessible to a broadly concerned public. The award is designed to recognize a person clearly associated with research and/or practice in anthropology. The awardee's activity will exemplify skills in broadening the impact of anthropology - skills for which Margaret Mead was admired widely.

Nominees for the 2014 award must have received the Ph.D. degree after January 1, 2005 (ten years or less ago). Each application must include the nominee's curriculum vitae, 2 letters of recommendation describing the accomplishment and documenting its impact on relevant publics beyond the discipline, and four copies of the book or film.

Nominees' contributions will be judged using the following criteria:

  1. intellectual quality
  2. clarity and understandability
  3. the extent or depth of impact and
  4. breadth of impact.

The selection committee consists of two persons appointed by the Society for Applied Anthropology and two persons appointed by the American Anthropological Association.

Please send nominations and four copies of supporting materials to the Margaret Mead Selection Committee at the following address:
Society for Applied Anthropology
P.O. Box 2436
Oklahoma City, OK 73101-2436
Phone: (405) 843-5113
FAX (405) 843-8553
E-mail info@sfaa.net

Deadline for receipt of materials is March 15 each year. Supporting material will not be returned unless specifically requested.

The 2014 Award winner will be announced during the 2014 Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association. Presentation of the Award plaque and stipend will be made jointly by the SfAA and AAA during the Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology in Spring 2015.


2013 Awardee
Sera Young
Previous Awardees
2012 Erin Finley
2011 Frances Norwood
2010 Jessaca Leinaweaver
2009 Sverker Finnstrom
2008 Daniel Jordan Smith
2007 Joao Biehl
2005 Luke Eric Lassiter
2004 Donna Goldstein
2003 Marc Sommers
2002 Tobias Hecht
2001 Mimi Nichter
2000 Kathryn Dudley
1999 Paul Farmer
1997 Philippe Bourgois
1995 Katherine A. Dettwyler
1993 Leo Chavez
1991 Will Roscoe
1990 Wenda Ruth Trevathan
1989 Mark Nichter
1988 Alex Stepick
1987 Myra Bluebond-Langner
1986 Jill E Korbin
1985 Susan C M Scrimshaw
1984 Sue E Estroff
1983 Ruthann Knudson
1982 Mary Elmendorf
1981 Nancy Scheper-Hughes
1980 Brigitte Jordan
1979 John Ogbu