This is the Silver Jubilee of AESOP and it is also the 10th anniversary of the Excellence in Teaching prize. Anniversaries are occasions for looking back to over the past, as well as occasions for looking forward to the future.

Over the last 10 years only undergraduate and postgraduate courses were have been awarded the Excellence in Teaching prize.  PhD programmes and any other initiatives regarding teaching and training for PhD students remained on the ‘backstage’, despite the many initiatives undertaken within Aesop and in AESOP member schools.  These activities have encompassed  designing PhD Programmes, running PhD workshops, and supporting Young Academic Conferences among many other  initiatives.

At the same time, AESOP has a prize for teaching and two prizes for research: the Best Conference Paper and the Best Published Paper.  As we know, what we do for PhD students and Young Academics links these two activities – teaching and research, and also links past and future.   In this sense, teaching is not just a transfer of knowledge.  It is also a cooperative and collective activity to develop new ideas and to give the opportunity of flourishing to young generations of researchers.

For all these reasons, we decided to award a Silver Prize in to those who, through many different initiatives, have significantly contributed to creating the pathway between being a PhD student and becoming a young researcher. This pathway includes: designing AESOP PhD Workshops and contributing to them; supporting initiatives by AESOP’s Young Academics such as their Conferences,  Network and other work; developing international PhD programmes involving the cooperation of different institutions; undertaking research on the similarities and differences among European PhD Programmes in order to improve cooperative programmes.

As all this has been a collective work by many individuals and, at the same time it is the tenth anniversary of the teaching prize, we have decided to award a special jubilee prize to ten colleagues.  There are specific reasons for including each of them, which are outlined above, but the general motivation to include all of them is that in all their work in teaching and supporting young researchers they have been and are ‘intellectually generous’, which – in our view- is the main distinction between being a good teacher and being an excellent one.

The ten colleagues who are recipients of the Silver Jubilee AESOP Prize for Excellence in Teaching are:

Alessandro Balducci

Barrie Needham

Patsy Healey

Kristina Nillson

Klaus Kunzmann

Gert de Roo

Karel Maier

Gerard Schimack

David Massey

Andreas Voigt