Caenarfon Award

The Caernarfon Award is presented annually for the best paper given at an Institute conference, seminar, meeting etc anywhere in the world which is adjudged to have contributed the most to the advancement of some aspect of the industry – either technical, environmental, strategic etc.

Originally, the Caernarfon Award was endowed by the North Wales branch and it is named after the town where the very first Institute meeting took place in 1917. The endowed sum was residual income from the branch’s successful seminar on the Quarries (Explosives) Regulations in 1987.

The first award was made in 1989.

The award has been made by Council in the UK in the past, but in 1998, responsibility for the adjudication was assumed by the International Presidents’ Committee.


  1. The annual competition period shall be for the previous calendar year and the paper must have been delivered within that period.
  2. Each President will put forward one paper from their respective Institute for consideration by the Presidents’ Committee. The paper must be endorsed by the President of the submitting IQ in order to be accepted. Each IQ is responsible for managing the process of selecting the paper they wish to submit to the International Presidents’ Committee.
  3. Each selected application from each IQ shall reach the award coordinator, initially the Institute’s UK CEO, by 30 April.
  4. International Presidents’ Committee can choose to present the award if only one paper is received, and the paper is deemed to be of high enough quality to meet the award criteria.
  5. The papers shall be circulated to the members of the International Presidents’ Committee for review.
  6. Papers can only be accepted from members or those who are in the application process for membership.
  7. The International Presidents’ Committee will hold a dedicated conference call to select the winning entry. Each President will present a brief summary to support the entry from their country during the meeting.
  8. The meeting will then vote for the winning entry. Presidents’ will not be allowed to vote for the submission from their country.
  9. In the event of a tie, the award will be adjudicated by the chair of the Presidents’ Committee or their nominee.
  10. The order of ranking will be circulated to members of International Presidents’ Committee for information.
  11. The award shall be presented to the winning author at the next annual general meeting of his/her national body / branch.
  12. The award coordinator will prepare a summary (ie media release, social media story) for distribution to all IQs.
  13. The winner will be promoted via all IQs to help edify the significance of the award.
  14. The prize fund shall be administered by the CEO of the Institute [UK] from the International Presidents’ Fund and reviewed as appropriate by the International Presidents’ Committee annually.
  15. For the purposes of the Caernarfon Award, a paper is defined as:
    • a published article in a peer reviewed journal related to the extractive industry;
    • a presentation of approximately 30+ mins (either virtually or in person) with content covering unique concepts and learnings.

Judging Criteria

Nomination Form

Past Winners

2022 Tegan Smith (Australia) (Changing Perspectives)

2021 Gavin Hartley – Blackhead Quarry (Quarrying Way Down South)

2020 No conference

2019 Kerry Reilly – Winstone Aggregates (Construction of a Wetland – A natural solution)

2013 Tony Hunter – Blackhead Quarry (The History of a Quarry in a City)

2012 Murray Discombe – Fraser Thomas Ltd (Lateral Spread and Liquefaction)

2011 Glenn Kiernan – Inline Drilling (Electric Dets vs Non-Electric Dets – You Decide)

2009 Darcy Maddern &Greg Slaughter – McDonalds Lime, Otorohanga (Sustainable Development Initiatives at Oparure Quarry)

2005 Gordon Laing, Alan Happy, Arsini Hanna, Michael Harris, Christina Renhart (Three Kings, Excellence in Environmental Management)

2004 Brian Bouzaid – Kiwi Point Quarry (Assessing & Mitigating the Landscape Effects)

1989 Brian Bartley (Autogenous Crushing)


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