Lovelace medal

Lovelace medal

by Academy Admin

The Lovelace medal was established by the Institute in 1998 and is administered by the Awards Committee of the Academy.

Ada Lovelace was a mathematician and scientist who worked with, and was an inspiration to, the computer pioneer Charles Babbage.

The Lovelace medal is presented to individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to the understanding or advancement of Computing.

It is generally expected that there will be one medallist each year, but the regulation allows either several medallists or no medallist.

Winners will normally be invited to give a public lecture on their work at the BCS Lovelace lecture the following year; and will also be asked to contribute an article describing their work in terms accessible to a general audience for publication in ITNOW, the BCS magazine.

2017 Award

Nominations open on 10 October 2016 and close on 16 January 2017. 

2016 award

Professor Andrew Blake has been named as the recipient of the 2016 BCS Lovelace Medal

2015 award winner

Professor Ross Anderson FRS FREng was the recipient of the 2015 Lovelace medal.

Past winners

Details of the previous winners of the Lovelace medal can be found in the Lovelace lectures section of this site.

Changes from previous years

The Lovelace medal is presented to individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to the understanding or advancement of computer science. It is a senior award. The expectation is that it is given to an academic or industrialist with a direct connection with the UK. 

The first change is that the focus on specific criteria has been removed.  In the past, there were different criteria set each year, rolling over three years. These can be approximately summarised as: foundational research; applied research; and products and practices.

These criteria have caused much confusion over the years. The committee decided this year to remove them. The committee still very much wants to encourage all forms of contribution to computer science, which should be interpreted broadly (for example, academic, industrial or teaching contribution to computer science, computer engineering or informatics). 

The other change is that candidates nominated will automatically be considered for three years. The nominator will be invited to update the application each year and given feedback when the committee judges the application to be unlikely to succeed.