ACM Doctoral Dissertation Competition

Funding Agency:
Association for Computing Machinery

ACM established the Doctoral Dissertation Award program to recognize and encourage superior research and writing by doctoral candidates in computer science and engineering. The award is presented each June at the ACM Awards Banquet and is accompanied by a prize of $20,000 plus travel expenses to the banquet.  As of January 1, 2014 all winning dissertations are published exclusively in print and electronic formats as part of the ACM Books Series, which includes distribution through the ACM Digital Library.  Honorable Mention(s) may also be awarded, with a prize of $10,000 shared among recipients.  Financial sponsorship of the award is provided by Google.


  • Duke Internal Deadline: August 21, 2019
  • Deadline for nominations: October 31, 2019

If the internal deadline has passed and you are interested in this opportunity, please email contact Paul Noe to find out if it is still open.

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

Only a Ph.D. student’s advisor may nominate a dissertation.  For each year’s award cycle, a nominated dissertation must have been successfully defended (not deposit date) by the department between October 2018 through (and including) September 2019.  The dissertation submitted should be a finalized version; if a student or advisor thinks a dissertation will be more competitive after revision, the dissertation defense should be postponed if necessary.  Nominations are welcomed from any country, but only English language versions will be accepted.  Only one nomination may be submitted per institution.  If an institution granted more than 10 PhD’s in that year, two dissertations may be nominated.



Funding Type



Grad/Prof Students


Engineering and Physical Sciences

Internal Nomination

Owing to the sponsor's restriction on the number of applications that may be submitted from Duke, anyone wishing to pursue nomination should submit the following materials as one PDF.

* Nomination letter by thesis advisor. This letter must include:

  1. the name, address, and phone number of the advisor,
  2. the name, mailing address and email address of the candidate, and
  3. Nomination statement (200-300 words in length) addressing why the candidate should receive this award.  This should address the significance of the dissertation, not simply repeat the information in the dissertation abstract.

* Letter of endorsement from the candidate's Departmental Chair.
* Candidate's CV - 2 pages

Please submit internal materials through My Research Proposal. (Code ILN)

Instructions for both creating an account (if you don't already have one) and submitting your materials can be found here:


Internal Deadline

August 21, 2019

External Deadline

October 31, 2019