Sir Derek Barton Gold Medal


The Sir Derek Barton Gold Medal recognises work in any area of organic chemistry which reflects the many diverse interests associated with Sir Derek.


2018 Winner

Professor Samuel Danishefsky

2018 Sir Derek Barton Gold Medal Winner

Professor Samuel Danishefsky, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Columbia University


General information


  • Run biennially - Closed for 2021 nominations
  • Award winner receives £2000, a medal and a certificate, presented at a special dinner and ceremony
  • Award winner will be chosen by the Barton Award Selection Panel and overseen by the Organic Division Awards Committee    

Guidelines for Nominators


  • Only RSC Members can nominate for this award
  • Nominees may NOT nominate themselves
  • The award is open to nominees based in the UK or internationally
  • Nominees should be 60 or over at the closing date of nominations 
  • When nominating previous RSC prize or award winners, please remember that a person cannot be awarded twice for substantially the same body of work    

To make a nomination please use our online awards nominations system to submit the following:

  • Your name, contact details, and membership number (please contact the RSC Membership team if you do not know your membership details)
  • The nominee's name and contact details 
  • An up to date CV for the nominee (no longer than one A4 side, 11pt text) which should include their date of birth, summary of education and career, a list of 5 relevant publications, total numbers of publications and patents (if appropriate) and website URL if relevant
  • A supporting statement (up to 4500 characters, not including spaces) addressing the selection criteria 
  • A short citation describing what the nominee should be awarded for. This must be no longer than 250 characters (not including spaces) and ideally no longer than one sentence
  • References are not required for this award and will not be accepted    

The RSC reserves the right to rescind any Prize or Award if there is reasonable grounds to do so. All nominators will be asked to confirm that, to the best of their knowledge, there is no confirmed or potential impediment to their nominee receiving this prize/award related to their professional standing. Our Professional Practice and Code of Conduct can be referred to as a guide on expected standards.


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Sir Derek Barton Gold Medal Sub-Committee


  • Pat Guiry, University College Dublin (Chair)
  • Anthony Barrett, Imperial College London
  • Stuart Conway, University of Oxford 
  • Sue Gibson, Imperial College London
  • William Motherwell, University College London
  • Samir Zard, CNRS-École Polytechnique

Organic Division Awards Committee


  • Stuart Conway, University of Oxford (Chair)
  • Steve Marsden, University of Leeds
  • Sarah Skerratt, MSD
  • Alethea Tabor, University College London
  • Mariola Tortosa, Universidad Autonoma de Madrid
  • Andrew C Williams, Eli Lilly

Previous Winners

Sir Derek Barton Gold Medal Previous Winners

2002 - present

History of the Award


Sir Derek Barton
This award was established in 2001 to commemorate the life and work of Sir Derek Barton who died in 1998.

After the development of a new technique of conformational analysis, which gave rise to an entirely new branch of chemistry, and his work on the conformation of the steroid nucleus, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1969.  

He was knighted in 1976 and, rather than facing retirement in the UK at 65, he moved to CNRS, Paris, and then to Texas A&M University, where he worked until the day of his death at age 80.

To celebrate Sir Derek's unique approach to his work, this award is made to a chemist 60 years of age or older.

The award is presented at a special dinner and ceremony held in London which, as specifically requested by Sir Derek in his bequest to the RSC, should include only the finest food and wines.


Contact and Further Information

Awards
Royal Society of Chemistry, Thomas Graham House, Cambridge Science Park, Milton Road, Cambridge, CB4 0WF
Tel: +44 (0)1223 420066