Uwe Radok Award for best PhD Thesis

 Dr Uwe Radok was one of Australia’s pioneers in meteorological and glaciological research. Becoming Head of the Department of Meteorology at the University of Melbourne in 1960, he played a leading role in the development of Australian Antarctic meteorology and glaciology. A meltwater lake in the Prince Charles Mountains in Antarctica has been named the Radok Lake after him.

In appreciation of Uwe Radok’s achievements, AMOS makes an annual award for the best PhD thesis for the preceding two years in the fields of meteorology, oceanography, glaciology or climatology awarded in Australia.

Uwe Radok grew up and did his university studies in Germany in the early 1930s but fled to England as Nazism took hold. He worked as an engineering draftsman in the UK but was interned in the early years of the War and then shipped to Australia where he was subject to a further period of internment before being released to join the Australian army in 1942. At the end of the War, he joined the University of Melbourne where he completed his PhD under Dr Fritz Loewe (as Loewe’s only doctoral student) and became known to his many subsequent students as ‘The Doc’. He took over as “Reader in Charge” of the Meteorology Department on Loewe’s retirement in 1960.

During the 1960s and 1970s Dr Radok conducted and led a wide-ranging research program and served as thesis supervisor and mentor for a host of Bureau of Meteorology, CSIRO and other researchers, many of who became the leading figures of Australian meteorology in the 1980s and 1990s. By 1980, the Meteorology Department under the leadership of Drs Loewe and Radok had produced 45 Masters Graduates, 15 PhDs and two DScs.

Dr Radok established research links with the Bureau of Meteorology, CSIRO and other government agencies. He built up an internationally respected research program in Antarctic glaciology. With Alison Grant he undertook early studies of aerological data over Australia. With Dick Jenssen and Ross Maine, he pioneered numerical weather prediction in Australia. And with Dr Kevin Spillane and Professor Elmar Reiter of Colorado State University, he made globally important discoveries on the mechanisms of clear air turbulence. He spent the last working decade of his highly productive meteorological career in the United States, in Boulder, Colorado. Uwe and his wife Anita eventually returned to Australia to retire on the NSW north coast. Uwe Radok died on August 28, 2009 aged 93. His ashes were scattered into the sea from the trawl deck of the Aurora Australis alongside an iceberg northeast of Davis Station, Antarctica on 20 March 2010.

Recipients

2007: Gab Abramowitz - Macquarie University
2008: Alex Sen Gupta - University of New South Wales
2009: Caroline Ummenhofer - University of New South Wales
2010: Jan Zika - University of New South Wales
2011: Savin Chand - University of Melbourne
2012: Joel Pedro - University of Tasmania - and - Paul Durack - University of Tasmania
2013: Yi Huang - Monash University
2014: Adele Morrison - Australian National University
2015: Tim Cowan - University of New South Wales

 

Award Prize Package

  • Invited oral presentation at the next AMOS Conference

  • Award presentation at the next AMOS Conference

  • $500 prize money

  • Waiver of registration fee for next AMOS Conference

  • Publication of summary paper in AMOS Bulletin

Application instructions:

Applications for the 2016 Uwe Radok Award open on 1 February, 2017

To apply for the Uwe Radok award, candidates are invited to submit a short scientific paper (<2 pages including figures and references) summarising the key outcomes of their research, a pdf version of their thesis and full copies of the examiners reports. The thesis must have been awarded by an Australian University. This should be supported by a letter from the supervisor or Head of School which outlines why the PhD is considered outstanding (including a synopsis of any relevant comments from the examiners) and which indicates the extent to which the high quality of the thesis is due to the student themselves rather than to the supervisor(s).

To be eligible for consideration for this round, individuals must have been awarded their PhD (i.e., a final decision made by the awarding university, but not necessarily have graduated) between 1 Jan 2015 and 31 Dec 2016. Submissions will be thoroughly reviewed by an AMOS scientific panel under the criteria of:

a) significance and innovation;
b) approach, methodology and presentation; and
c) potential longer-term benefit.

The academic supervisor may provide a brief statement stating any special effort made by a student from a non-English speaking background.

Download the application form at the bottom of this page and email (subject: Uwe Radok award) to: admin@amos.org.au by 30 MAY 2017

Note that this is the last year for which there will be a 2-year “window” for eligible theses for the Uwe Radok Award. Thus only PhDs awarded in calendar 2017 will be eligible for the award next year.

Selection criteria

Submissions will be thoroughly reviewed by an AMOS scientific panel under the criteria of:

a) significance and innovation;
b) approach, methodology and presentation; and
c) potential longer-term benefit.

The academic supervisor may provide a brief statement stating any special effort made by a student from a non-English speaking background.

Sub-Committee - Uwe Radok Award

Melissa Hart (Chair)
Kevin Walsh
Peter Strutton
Steve Siems
Shane Keating

Awards Committee Contact

Neville Nicholls 
Chair, AMOS Awards Committee
Email: awards@amos.org.au

uwe_radok_application_form
(Microsoft Word Document)