The awards are given annually for outstanding work by participants in the institute's Young Scientists Summer Program. They provide financial support for the winners to return to IIASA for an additional three months of research.

Awards © Richard Thomas | Dreamstime

The Peccei Award was established in 1984 in recognition of Dr. Aurelio Peccei's contribution to the understanding of global problems and his efforts to promote multi-national collaborative research.

The Mikhalevich Award was established in 1995 following the death of Academician Vladimir S. Mikhalevich, a pioneer in cybernetics and mathematical problems, who at that time was Chairman of the IIASA Council.

The selection procedure

The following criteria will be taken into account by external reviewers and the Awards Selection Committee when reviewing the papers:

Quality of the research: For example, is the problem/issue clearly framed and described?; the methodology well executed?; the study grounded in the literature?; the derived conclusions justifiable? 

Originality of the research: For example, is the problem framed in a unique way?; the chosen methodology/approach innovative? 

Effectiveness of the approach: For example, are the research objectives effectively met?, the problem/ issue effectively approached/solved?; the research appropriately interdisciplinary?  

Relevance/impact of the research: For example, does the study advance science or methodology?; is it policy relevant? 

Memos from supervisors supporting their candidate: The Selection Committee is usually made up of IIASA director, the YSSP dean, and scientific representatives from IIASA programs.


Dr. Aurelio Peccei


Dr. Aurelio Peccei © IIASA
The late Dr. Aurelio Peccei, best known as President of the Club of Rome

Dr. Aurelio Peccei (1908-1984), perhaps best known as the President of the Club of Rome, enjoyed a distinguished career in industry, conservation, and international affairs. His hallmark was a humanistic approach to the problems confronting the modern world, be they economic, technological, managerial, or political.

Dr. Peccei was a consistent and devoted friend of IIASA, a member of the small group of individuals who inspired the original concept of the Institute and contributed actively to its realization. In his later years, his overwhelming concern was the challenge of finding creative opportunities for young people to influence a shared future. In 1984, the Peccei Award was established in an effort to meet this charge, as well as to recognize Peccei's contribution to multinational collaborative research

Academician Vladimir S. Mikhalevich


Acad. Vladimir S. Mikhalevic © IIASA
The late Acad. Vladimir S. Mikhalevich, IIASA Council Member from Ukraine

Academician Vladimir S. Mikhalevich (1930-1994) was the Council Member of the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences at the time of his death. He was associated with the Institute for many years, in a scientific capacity as a member of the System and Decision Sciences Advisory Committee, and administratively, as Chairman of the Governing Council from 1987 to 1992.

Perhaps less known, but equally important, was Academician Mikhalevich's role in the academic world of the former Soviet Union. At a time when it was not popular, he ventured into cybernetics and employed computers for mathematical problems. He not only conducted his own pioneer work, but unfailingly supported young researchers who came to work with him even when they followed new directions of enquiry, which diverged from his own.

2021 Winners

Mikhalevich Award: 

siddarth © Siddarth

Siddarth Joshi from the University of Cork, Ireland has won the Mikhalevich Award for his study: “Role of Rooftop Solar Photovoltaics in Global Energy Transitions”

IIASA program: Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE), 

Supervisors: Behnam Zakeri, Alessio Mastrucci, Volker Krey

Peccei Award:

scott © IIASA

Scott Spillias from the University of Queensland, Australia has won the Peccei Award for his study: “The Global Benefits of Large-Scale Seaweed Farming”

IIASA program: Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR)

Supervisors: Hugo Valin, Miroslav Batka, Petr Havlik

Honorable mentions:

IIASA © Yingjie

An honorable mention goes to Yingjie Li from Michigan State University, USA, for his study on: “International socio-environmental spillover effects on achieving the national SDGs”

IIASA program: Advancing Systems Analysis (ASA)

Supervisors: Brian Fath, Petr Havlik

camille © Camille

An honorable mention goes to Camille Belmin from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), Germany, for her study on: “Introducing the energy-fertility nexus in population projections: can universal access to modern energy lead to energy savings?”

IIASA program: Population and Just Societies (POPJUS), Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE)

Supervisors: Guillaume Marois, Shonali Pachauri