Postgraduate Research Excellence Awards

Victoria University of Wellington established the Postgraduate Research Excellence Awards in 2009. The awards recognise research by VUW postgraduate students that:

  • Displays academic rigour, excellence, originality, and/or creativity;

  • Demonstrates an impact within the scholarly, economic, or wider stakeholder communities;

  • Displays clarity of expression that addresses an educated but non-expert audience;

  • Advances knowledge in the field and/or contributes to knowledge.

Applicants for the awards must, in not more than 1000 words, explain how their research meets the above criteria, and must provide evidence of their research in their application form.


Each award provides research funding (approximately $3000) that must be used within one calendar year. This funding will be set up as a grant in the Research Trust of Victoria University and any use must be consistent with the policies of the Research Trust.


Applicants must be VUW postgraduate students who are fully registered for a PhD or who have had their Master’s research proposal fully approved by their School. These are research degree awards – research Masters, PhD, research Doctorates.  Honours, Postgrad Diplomas and taught Masters are not eligible.

Applicants who have received this award in the past are not eligible.

Note: Recipients must be enrolled at VUW to utilise the research funding.

Evidence Required

In addition to the explanation of the importance of the research, applicants must submit evidence that is not more than two years old in one of the following forms:

  • A published paper;

  • A research essay (submitted for publication or suitable for publication in an academic journal);

  • A chapter of a longer work (such as a book or your thesis);

  • A section of a long poem;

  • A cycle of shorter poems;

  • A creative work and evidence of public display or performance;

  • A creation of commercialised intellectual property or a patent.

No submission is to exceed 6,000 words – this includes references.

Maori Knowledge and Development

Applicants may select whether they wish to have their research considered for this award. Māori Knowledge and Development incorporates one or more of the following:

  • Māori world views (both traditional and contemporary);

  • Māori methods of research;

  • Research that has a high likelihood of improving conditions for Māori.

Process for Marking Awards

Applications are considered by a committee convened by the Vice-Provost (Research).  The winners of the awards are announced at the PGSA Victorias Awards function in November.

Obligations and agreements for all applicants

By entering their name on the application form, applicants agree to all terms and conditions outlined in the application form. Please note that it will be mandatory for all applicants to attend the PGSA Victorias Awards function on Thursday 30 November 2018 when the winners will be announced.

Research funding

The awards provide funding to support the research of the student receiving the award and the funds may be used to support research or dissemination of the research, including travel and accommodation to collect data or attend a conference, consistent with the policies of the Research Trust.

How to apply

Applications for 2019 will open later in the year.