SIGIR Early Career Researcher Awards

This award recognizes outstanding contributions and leadership to the SIGIR community in research, community engagement, and/or diversity, equity, and inclusion by an early career researcher (ECR).

There are three categories of awards, each with different criteria:

  1. ACM SIGIR excellence in Research for ECRs
    • For single or cumulative research contributions to IR
  2. ACM SIGIR excellence in Community Engagement for ECRs
    • For contributions to professional service in the IR community (e.g., SIGIR leadership, conference volunteering)
  3. ACM SIGIR Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for ECRs
    • For contributions around initiating, driving, and supporting diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts in the community. This can include demonstrating the impact of and positive outcomes for diversity, equity, and inclusion on gender identity, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, disability, cultural background, and age, in combination or in isolation.

An ECR can apply for multiple categories per year. ECRs can only receive one award per category. A single person can win awards in various categories in the same year if they have exceptional accomplishments in those categories. Awards are given annually and presented at the ACM SIGIR conference.

ECRs are people within seven years post-conferral date (the date recorded on transcripts signifying when the degree was officially recognized) of their PhD. For ECRs whose contributions have been realized over a period longer than seven years from PhD award due to career disruption (pregnancy, major illness, caregiver responsibilities, or other disruptions), the entrant must address this in the entry documentation citing the circumstances of career disruption and demonstrating that the entrant has completed the work within a period of no more than seven years FTE (full-time equivalent) research activity.

Submission Guidelines
Nominations for ACM SIGIR ECR Awards should be submitted via email to the selection committee chair (Robert Capra) at sigir-ecr-award at Nominations are due by end of day (AoE) on 31 December 2022. We will acknowledge receipt.

Nominations are permitted for multiple categories, which need to be addressed separately. When ECRs are considering to only apply for the Research award, only the Research section must be completed. Please, prepare a single PDF named as FirstName_LastName_SIGIR_ECR_Year containing the following:

  • ACM SIGIR excellence in Research:
    • Substantial research contributions related to IR. Related disciplines and fields may be considered (no more than 200 words)
  • ACM SIGIR excellence in Community Engagement:
    • Community engagement activities within the IR community (no more than 200 words)
  • ACM SIGIR Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion:
    • Activities related to the improvement of diversity, equity, and inclusion within the IR community (no more than 200 words)
  • Statement of career aspiration for the next five years (no more than 200 words)
  • Career interruptions if applicable (no more than 400 words)
  • CV
    • Only include research outputs in the seven years prior to the nomination deadline
  • Supporting letters from two people (other than the nominator/nominee) who encourage/support the nomination


  • Self-nominations are permitted.
  • Nominees must be current SIGIR members and active participants in the ACM SIGIR community (e.g., published papers, volunteered, or organized diversity-related events at ACM SIGIR in the past seven years).
  • Resubmission of unsuccessful applications is encouraged. Unsuccessful nominations will not be rolled over from year to year.

Selection Process
The ACM SIGIR ECR awards selection committee will assess applications. The committee will follow the ACM Diversity and Inclusion policy ( The committee’s decision will be final, no feedback will be provided, and no further correspondence will be entered into. The committee reserves the right not to award the prize if they feel all entries are insufficiently worthy.

Award winners will be notified of the outcome of their nomination by email and will be publicly announced at the next SIGIR conference. The award consists of a plaque engraved with the nominee’s name, a $1000 honorarium, and up to $2000 towards support for travel to SIGIR. ACM SIGIR provides funding for the award.

Please contact the ACM SIGIR ECR awards committee chair at the email address above for questions about the ECR awards, nominations, or the selection process.