The Scientific Prize

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The Union Scientific Prize

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The Union Scientific Prize acknowledges researchers at any stage of their career for work in lung health published in the past five years leading up to the Union World Conference in which the award is presented.

Nominations are paused for this prize until further notice.

The award is presented at the Union World Conference on Lung Health and consists of a full fellowship to attend the conference (including full delegate badge, travel, accommodation and per diem), US$ 2,000 and a certificate.

  • Honorees may request that the fellowship portion of the award be used for a delegate who would not otherwise be able to attend the conference.
  • Honorees unable to attend the conference may designate a colleague to accept the award on their behalf.


2020: Prof Robert J Wilkinson (UK), Senior Group Leader at the Francis Crick Institute and Professor in Infectious Diseases at Imperial College London, was honoured for his impressive contribution to HIV associated TB spanning nearly 30 years.

2019: The prize was awarded to Dr Katharina Kranzer (UK), Clinical Associate Professor in Infectious Disease Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, and the Biomedical Research and Training Institute in Harare, Zimbabwe. The award recognised Dr Kranzer’s exemplary work characterised by the appropriate use of research methods across different disciplines with an emphasis on collaboration and capacity building.

2018: The prize was awarded to Prof Katherine Fielding (UK), Professor of Medical Statistics and Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine where she has been a senior investigator and statistician on a series of ground-breaking trials.

2017: Dr Sarita Shah (USA) was honoured for her outstanding collaborative and broad-reaching work on drug-resistant TB in Africa, including describing the geographic spread of XDR-TB, and treatment outcomes of patients co-infected with HIV and MDR/XDR-TB.

2016: Dr Andreas Diacon (South Africa) is professor at Stellenbosch University, Cape Town and Chief Executive Officer of Task Applied Science. He was honoured for his research on TB and investigations into development of new TB drugs.

2015: Dr Helen Cox (Australia) is a senior researcher in the Department of Medical Microbiology at the University of Cape Town. As an epidemiologist specialising in tuberculosis, she has worked in TB and drug-resistant TB since 2001. She was instrumental in the establishment of one of the first drug-resistant TB treatment programmes in Central Asia and since 2008 has been involved in operational research in Khayelitsha, a Cape Town township with a high burden of drug-resistant TB.

2014: Dr Richard E Chaisson (USA) is the founder and Director of the Center for Tuberculosis Research; Principal Investigator of the Center for AIDS Research; and Professor of Medicine, Epidemiology and International Health at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland (USA). He has worked in TB and HIV research for more than 30 years and has been active in both clinical care and the training of new clinicians and researchers.  He has published more than 450 scientific papers and book chapters.

2013: Dr Kogieleum Naidoo (South Africa) was honoured for her published research on TB-HIV, including a study of when to initiate antiretroviral drugs during TB treatment that demonstrated a 56% reduction in mortality among patients co-infected with HIV and TB.

2012: Dr Dick Menzies (Canada) has a well-known, long history of involvement in tuberculosis care and research, beginning with his years in Lesotho. He has developed a tuberculosis research programme of clinical and epidemiologic studies linked with a large multi-disciplinary clinical service at the Montreal Chest Institute.

2011: Dr Haileyesus Getahun (Switzerland) of the WHO Stop TB Department for his contributions to the development of evidence-based TB and HIV policy and practice. As coordinator of the Global TB/HIV Working Group of the Stop TB Partnership, he has helped in setting the global advocacy agenda for worldwide response among stakeholders.

2010: Dr Keertan Dheda (South Africa) for his outstanding contributions and ongoing research programme in the priority area of TB and extensively drug-resistant TB.

2009: Dr Rod Escombe (UK) for his research on natural ventilation for the prevention of airborne contagion, upper room UV light for prevention of nosocomial TB transmission and the infectiousness of TB patients coinfected with HIV.

2008: Dr Rony Zachariah (Belgium) for his work on the delivery and monitoring of ART in a district setting which paved the way for Malawi's national ART system.

2007: Dr Madhukar Pai (India/Canada) for his work on improving the diagnosis of tuberculosis, development of evidence-based standards for TB care and control, and TB infection control in developing countries.

2006: Dr Stephen D Lawn (South Africa)

2005: Dr Ajit Lalvani (UK)

2004: Dr Igor Mokrousov (Russia)

2003: Dr Elizabeth Lucy Corbett (UK)

2002: Dr Jose A Castro Rodriguez (Chile)

2001: no award given

2000: Dr Ramesh Panchagnula (India)

1999: Dr Fred Nuwaha (Uganda)

1998: Dr Joseph A Odhiambo (Kenya)