Submission Deadline: March 18, 2024

Dissertation Award

The Dissertation Award honors outstanding scientists early in their careers and to help defray costs of attending the meeting. The winner of this award will received a $700 cash award, and engraved plaque and be invited to give a special presentation of his/her dissertation at the annual meeting. Nominations may be made only by a regular (non-student) member of the Society.

The nominee must be a current ISDP Student or Postdoc Member and have been granted their degree within 18 months prior to the nomination

Criteria for the award: (in addition to criteria mentioned above)

a. The applicant/nominee must be a member of ISDP
b. The applicant/nominee has not won this award in the past
c. The applicant/nominee must have an overall good academic record
d. The applicant/nominee’s work must show originality and significance
e. The applicant/nominee must be committed to the field of Developmental Psychobiology show promise of a career in this field

Application materials:

1. A letter of nomination/recommendation from the student’s research advisor that documents the student’s status, the level of independence of the student’s contribution. Note: the letter of nomination for this award has to be by a Regular or Early-Career Member of the ISDP and should focus on discussing the quality of the nominee’s dissertation research.
2. Applicant’s current CV.
3. Applicant’s abstract of the dissertation.
4. A summary of the dissertation, not to exceed 7 double-spaced pages

Dissertation Award Winners:


2023 ISDP Dissertation Award Winner – Isabella (Isa) Stallworthy, PhD
JSMF Postdoctoral Fellow
Complex Systems Lab
University of Pennsylvania
Pronouns: she/her/hers

2022 Dissertation Award Winner: Lana Ruvolo Grasser, PhD (she/her/hers)
Stress, Trauma, and Anxiety Research Clinic (STARC Lab;; Jovanovic Lab—Detroit Trauma Project (DTP;

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences
Wayne State University School of Medicine
Detroit, USA  @ScientificRuvvy
Doctoral Mentorship: Drs. Arash Javanbakht and Tanja Jovanovic.

2021 Dissertation Award Winner: Kristie L. Poole, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada, Social Development Lab, Department of Psychology @Poole_Kristie

– Postdoctoral Supervisor: Dr. Heather A. Henderson
Ph.D., Developmental Psychology; McMaster University, Child Emotion Lab, Department of Psychology, Neuroscience, & Behaviour Dissertation: The origins and heterogeneity of shyness: A developmental, biological perspective, Supervisor: Dr. Louis A. Schmidt

2020 Dissertation Award Winner:Morgan Reiss Firestein, Department of Psychiatry, Division of Developmental Neuroscience, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY USA
– Postdoctoral Mentor: William Fifer, Columbia University in the City; Dissertation Mentor: Frances Champagne, Columbia University in the City

2019 Dissertation Award Winner: Virginia C. Salo, Postdoctoral Fellow, Stress and Early Adversity Laboratory, Vanderbilt University, Department of Psychology and Human Development, Nashville, Research – Postdoctoral Mentor: Kathryn L. Humphreys, PhD, Ed.M.; Dissertation Mentor: Nathan Fox, PhD

2018 Dissertation Award Winner: Caitlin Cowan, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia (formerly, Caitlin Cowan, APC Microbiome Institute, University College Cork, Ireland) – Dissertation Mentor: Rick Richardson, University of New South Wales

2017 Dissertation Award Winner: Rosemarie Perry, Postdoctoral Research Scientist NYU, Neuroscience and Education Lab,