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Each year, nominations are called for the AAS Article Prize, awarded for the best scholarly article published in an Australian journal. The call is sent out to the editor(s) of the five eligible journals, who are responsible for nominating candidates. Nominations open four months prior to, and close three months prior to, the Annual Conference. Final decisions are made three weeks prior to the conference.

Articles published in the following journals may be nominated:
  • Anthropological Forum

  • Oceania

  • The Australian Journal of Anthropology (TAJA)

  • The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology (TAPJA)

  • Australian Aboriginal Studies (anthropological articles only)

The winner is formerly announced at the Annual General Meeting and the prize is awarded at the Annual Conference dinner. The winner receives a written certificate, a prize of AUD500, as well as conference registration and a conference dinner ticket for that year’s conference. In the event that the winning article is co-authored, the prize money is to be split between all contributors and the AAS will provide a maximum of two conference registrations and two dinner tickets.

Articles submitted for the prize in previous years may not be resubmitted.

Assessment criteria

Nominated articles are judged by a panel of three judges, with a fourth on standby in case of dispute.

The criteria by which articles are assessed are as follows:
  • Theoretical sophistication

  • Ethnographic depth

  • Lucid writing

  • Originality

Price Recipients

2020 AAS Article Prize Winner

Gibson, Thomas (2019). From Tribal Hut to Royal Palace: The Dialectic of Equality and Hierarchy in Austronesian Southeast AsiaAnthropological Forum 29(3): 234-248

2019 AAS Article Prize Winner

Roberts, Jason (2019). 'We Live Like This': Local Inequalities and Disproportionate Risk in the Context of Extractive Development and Climate Change on New Hanover Island, Papua New GuineaOceania 89 (1): 68–88.

2018 AAS Article Prize Winner

Pertierra, Anna Cristina (2018). 'Televisual experiences of poverty andabundance: Entertainment television in the Philippines'. The Australian Journal of Anthropology 29 (1): 3-18.

2017 AAS Article Prize Winner

Dawson, Andrew (2017). 'Driven to sanity: An ethnographic critique of the senses in automobilities'. The Australian Journal of Anthropology 28 (1): 3-20.

2016 AAS Article Prize Winner

Gillison, Gillian (2016). ‘Whatever Happened to the Mother? A New Look at the Old Problem of the Mother’s Brother in Three New Guinea Societies: Gimi, Daribi, and Iatmul’. Oceania 86 (1): 2-24.

2015 AAS Article Prize Winner

Schram, Ryan (2015). ‘Notes on the Sociology of Wontoks in Papua New Guinea’. Anthropological Forum 25 (1): 3-20.

2014 AAS Article Prize Winner

Plueckhahn, Rebekah (2014). ‘Fortune, Emotion and Poetics: The Intersubjective Experience of Mongolian Musical Sociality’. The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology 15 (2): 123-140.

2013 AAS Article Prize Winner

Hetherington, Tracy (2013), ‘Remodelling the Fortress of Conservation’. Anthropological Forum 22 (2): 165-185.

2012 AAS Article Prize Winner

Biersack, Aletta 2011. ‘The Sun and the Shakers, Again: Enga, Ipili, and Somaip Perspectives on the Cult of Ain’. Oceania 81 (2): 113-136; (3): 225-243. (Part 1 and Part 2)

2011 AAS Article Prize Winner 

Sansom, B. 2010. ‘The Refusal of Holy Engagement: How Man-making Can Fail’. Oceania 80 (1): 24-57.

2010 AAS Article Prize Winner 

Telle, K. 2009. ‘Spirited places and ritual dynamics among Sasak Muslims on Lombok’. Anthropological Forum 19 (3): 289-306.

2009 AAS Article Prize Winner

Rollason, Will. 2008. ‘Counterparts: Clothing, Value and the Sites of Otherness in Panapompom Ethnographic Encounters’. Anthropological Forum 18 (1): 17-35.

2009 AAS Article Prize Special Commendation

Telban, Borut. 2008. ‘The Poetics of the Crocodile: Changing Cultural perspectives in Ambonwari’. Oceania 78 (2): 217-235.

2008 AAS Article Prize Winner

Scott, Michael 2007. ‘Neither “New Melanesian History” nor “New Melanesian Ethnography”: Recovering Emplaced Matrilineages in Southeast Solomon Islands’. Oceania 77 (3): 337-354.

2008 AAS Article Prize Special Commendation

Ram, Kalpana 2007. ‘Untimeliness as Moral Indictment: Tamil Agricultural Labouring Women’s Use of Lament as Life Narrative’. The Australian Journal of Anthropology 18 (2): 138-153.