Launch of Science Media Competition for Third Level Students with €2,000 Awarded for the Best Work on the Theme: ‘Science for the love of it’

Submission Deadline: Midnight Sunday 31 March 2019

DUBLIN—We are pleased to invite applications for the Mary Mulvihill Award 2019, which commemorates the work and legacy of science journalist, author and Ingenious Ireland founder Mary Mulvihill (1959-2015).

Mary Mulvihill on a beach in Galapagos Islands

Mary Mulvihill – Galapagos Islands

In this, the third year of the competition, entries are invited on the theme of ‘Science for the love of it’. We are open to entries exploring this theme from different perspectives and in any media format.

As a writer and broadcaster, Mary Mulvihill was motivated by her love of science, and she often chose to feature scientists who themselves showed passion—and love—for their work. The passion of amateur scientists—astronomers, birdwatchers and citizen scientists—has long been celebrated, and being a nerd or a geek is now considered a badge of honour. But the personal motivations of professional scientists are often framed by other concepts, such as ambition, obsession or intellectual curiosity. Scientists are less frequently asked about the feelings they have for their work—and for the subjects of that work. When they are, they may acknowledge that they love the bacteria, the materials, the equations or the galaxies that their research is focused on.

It is this dimension of science that we wish to see explored, be it through the experience of the person submitting the entry, or that of a single scientist or a group of scientists (amateur or professional). It could be depicted in stories, memories or images that reflect a love of science.

Mary Mulvihill enjoying the view at the top of a mountain.

Mary Mulvihill enjoying the view at the top of a mountain.

An entry could include audio or video interviews, mini-features on life stories, extended reportage, a written essay that presents a sustained argument, a photographic essay that represents the working and personal life of a passionate scientist, blog posts on case studies, or combinations of any of these formats. As guidance on the scope of an entry, this might be an essay, a series of blog posts, a group of mini-features, all adding up to 2,500 words, or a video or audio production of 12-15 minutes. These indications are offered for guidance only; they are not prescriptive.

The award is open to undergraduate and postgraduate students enrolled in an Irish higher education institution at the time of submission. Joint entries or individual submissions are eligible. The competition is open to unpublished work or material published or broadcast after 1 September 2018. Submissions for the award should include evidence of current registration as a student, and an attestation that the submitted work is the applicant’s original work. For further information on the award and on past winners see

The judges for the Mary Mulvihill Award are:

  • Ellen Byrne – Creative director & co-founder, Festival of Curiosity
  • Karlin Lillington – Irish Times tech journalist & columnist
  • Nigel Monaghan – Keeper, National Museum of Ireland – Natural History
  • Anne Mulvihill – Sister of Mary Mulvihill

Queries should be directed to the Administrator of the Mary Mulvihill Award:

The deadline for the 2019 Award is Midnight, Sunday 31 March 2019. Finished submissions can be made through the online submission form or emailed directly to

In the event that the electronic file of the work is too large to send by email, please contact the Administrator in good time for advice on how submission.

About The Mary Mulvihill Award

The Mary Mulvihill Award is a project of Remembering Mary, an initiative established by the family and friends of the late Mary Mulvihill (1959–2015) to honour her memory and her work in science journalism, science communication and heritage and to promote her legacy. It administers and awards funds to support work that commemorates her work and its significance.

High Resolution Pictures Available On Request.

Media queries may be directed to the Competition Administrator Cormac Sheridan:
T: 01-868-9306
M: 087-686-4323