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IEC begins process of selecting candidates for Lord Kelvin Award
The Lord Kelvin award is the highest IEC accolade, recognizing exceptional long-term achievements

Members of the IEC community have been encouraged to nominate candidates for a Lord Kelvin Award. The prestigious prize recognizes exceptional and dedicated individual contributions to IEC standardization or conformity assessment work.

The Lord Kelvin Award is the highest honour in the global electrotechnology industry.

A call has gone out to IEC National Committees and chairs of IEC Technical Committees, Subcommittees and Conformity Assessment Systems, as well as members of the Conformity Assessment Board (CAB) and Standardization Management Board (SMB). The IEC Council and Council Board (CB) may also make nominations.

They have until 30 April to identify outstanding candidates and to make a case for recognizing their leadership and technical expertise over a period of at least five years. In order to be considered, candidates must still be active in the IEC.

The selection of a single winner is the responsibility of CB members. No award will be made for 2021 if they deem that no candidate has satisfied the selection criteria.

The 2020 Lord Kelvin Award went to Toshiyuki Kajiya, from Japan, for his outstanding contribution to the development of market-relevant and cost-efficient conformity assessment services. Mr Kajiya received the solid gold medal in a ceremony held in Japan, which was also streamed during the Council meeting at the IEC General Meeting (GM).

The global coronavirus pandemic meant that the IEC President, Dr Yinbiao Shu, and the IEC General Secretary, Mr Philippe Metzger, could only send video messages to congratulate the latest Lord Kelvin laureate. The IEC President usually awards the medal at a physical ceremony during the annual GM, which this year is scheduled to take place in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, from 3-7 October.

The Lord Kelvin Award takes its name from the first IEC President, who was a distinguished scientist and prolific inventor. Lord Kelvin contributed significantly to the advancement of modern physics and to practical applications of electrotechnology.

Many consider Lord Kelvin and Charles Le Maistre, who was the first IEC General Secretary, to be the fathers of standardization. They put in place the processes and methodologies that facilitate the spread of new technologies and enable countries to build more sustainable infrastructure.

To a large extent, the Lord Kelvin Award honours their vision and drive to understand and improve the practical applications of the technologies that are part of our daily lives.

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