Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences

Outstanding Performance Awards

These awards recognize CIRES people and teams for outstanding science and service in science and administration

Lineup of crystal award trophies

The CIRES Outstanding Performance Awards are meant to recognize projects that are novel and high-impact and show remarkable creativity or resourcefulness.

Science and Engineering

In the Science and Engineering category, this may involve any work that is related to the scientific process (forming and testing hypotheses to further our understanding of the environmental sciences). Examples include:

  • Development of new scientific, engineering, and/or software tools or models directly resulting in novel research valuable to CIRES and the wider scientific community
  • Uncommon initiative, resourcefulness, and/or scientific creativity conducting research with potential to expand or change the direction of a particular field or discipline
  • Participation in collaborative and/or multidisciplinary research that engages a broader cross-section than the nominee’s typical scientific or engineering community

Projects in the Science and Engineering category are often associated with published or forthcoming results in the peer-reviewed literature. Please include in the application any relevant scientific references or press coverage the work received.

Science Service

In the Science Service category, recognized work may involve any that facilitates, supports, enhances, or promotes work in the environmental sciences, such as:

  • Implementation of a creative or innovative idea, device, process, or system that aids in research, teaching, or outreach at CIRES
  • Development or improvement of a service that increases the efficiency, quality, or visibility of scientific research or outreach
  • Provision of a service that promotes or inspires excellence and dedication to research performed at CIRES or in the wider community

Projects in the Science Service category are successful because of the utility they have within the community. Please include any letters of support or supplemental material that may aid the committee in appreciating the value of the service provided.

Administrative Service

In the Administrative Service category, this may involve any work that facilitates, supports, or promotes CIRES work and operations, such as:

  • Considerable improvements to operational, technical, or business processes such as lab maintenance and development that aid in research, teaching, or outreach at CIRES
  • Development or improvement of a service that increases the effectiveness, efficiency, or quality of CIRES work and operations like assistance with grants, travel reimbursements, purchasing, building and equipment maintenance, or non-scientific software development
  • Providing initiatives to advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI), Human Resources programs, or other administrative divisions that support effective and invaluable work and operations at CIRES

An Administrative Service award nominee does not have to be in CIRES administration, so long as the work being recognized is administrative. For instance, measurement staff at the Global Monitoring Laboratory (GML) are Associate Scientists who maintain and improve lab operations and design non-scientific software to help with analysis workflows.  

Projects in the Administrative Service category often include obstacles that have had to be overcome or are successful because the nominees show perseverance, loyalty, and commitment to CIRES and its mission. Please include in the application any examples of such qualities, letters of support, or supplemental material that may aid the committee in appreciating the value of administrative service provided.

At the time of the nomination deadline, nominees (except students) must be active CIRES employees for both individual and team awards. To receive an OPA award, the nominee must also still be a CIRES employee at the time of the CIRES rendezvous.

We have many outstanding members in CIRES: Let's honor them! Nominations should be submitted via the InsideCIRES website, which also provides more information on eligibility and award criteria.