We announce the winners for our Research Awards 2020

This year we offered three awards for involvement in paediatric research, The Lorber Award, The Simon Newell award and the PIER prize. We are proud to announce this years winners of these coveted awards.

Simon Newell Young Investigator of the Year Award

This annual award recongises excellence in paediatric research. It's jointly funded by the RCPCH, GOSH charity and Sparks (now part of the GOSH charity family).

The award is named in memory of Dr Simon Newell, a renowned and widely respected neonatologist and paediatrician who had a passion to encourage the next generation of paediatric clinicians and researchers. Simon made an enormous contribution to neonatal medicine across the UK and was a great advocate for paediatric health. The award is offered to recognise an outstanding young medically qualified researcher in British paediatrics.

The winner is awarded the Sparks trophy, £1,000 prize money for themselves and £1,000 prize money for their department to buy equipment and cover other expenses such as consumables connected with their research. 

This year the Simon Newell award goes to Dr Francesco Saverio Tedesco.

You can read more about Dr Tedesco's work and why he was selected for the award on the Sparks charity website.

Lorber Prize

John Lorber (1915-1996) was a Professor of Paediatrics at the University of Sheffield. He made major contributions to the field of medical ethics, childhood tuberculosis and neural tube defects. The Lorber prize was established in his memory by his wife, and is awarded to the author of the best article on any subject related to paediatrics published or accepted for publication within the previous year.

This prize is open to medical practitioners who are registered in the UK and working in pre-consultant grades at the time the relevant scientific paper is accepted for publication. The winner receives £200 prize money. 

This year the prize has been awarded jointly to:

  • Dr Sunil Bhopal for the paper ‘The contribution of childhood adversity to cortisol measures of early life stress amongst infants in rural India: Findings from the early life stress substudy of the SPRING cluster randomised controlled trial (SPRING-ELS)’
  • Dr Shuko Joseph for the paper ‘Fractures and Linear Growth in a Nationwide Cohort of Boys With Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy With and Without Glucocorticoid Treatment’


For its first year, the PIER (Paediatric Involvement and Engagement in Research) Award recognises significant contributions to excellent patient engagement for NIHR Clinical Research Network Portfolio studies. The prize is designed to recognise the multidisciplinary research teams who make outstanding contributions to involving paediatric patients and families in the development and delivery of research.

This year the prize has been awarded to the Cleft Collective Speech and Language Study, including:

  • Dr Yvonne Wren
  • Professor Jonathan Sandy
  • Kerry Humphries 
  • Anna Martindale

We would like to congratulate and thank each of the winners for their outstanding research work within paediatrics.

We will begin accepting applications for the 2021 research awards in July 2020.