Harold & Margaret Sprout Award

The Harold and Margaret Sprout Award was established in 1972 and named in honor of two pioneers in the study of international environmental problems. The award is sponsored by the Environmental Studies Section (ESS), and is given annually to the best book in the field - one that makes a contribution to theory and interdisciplinarity, shows rigor and coherence in research and writing, and offers accessibility and practical relevance. Nominated books should address some aspect of one or more environmental, pollution or resource issues from a broadly international or transnational perspective, including works in (for example) global, interstate, transboundary, North-South, foreign policy, comparative or area studies. Environmental subjects of books can include (for example) environmental law, diplomacy, transnational activism, natural resource use, global change, sustainable development, biodiversity, transboundary pollution control, and the like.

General Information

Recipients must meet the Following Criteria

  1. Recipients must be a current member of ISA
  2. Nominated works must be published during the two years prior to the year they are nominated for. Books with a copyright date of the award year are welcome, provided they are released by the previous year’s end.
  3. Each publisher may nominate more than one book, and books nominated for the prior year can be re-nominated.


  • A $500.00 (USD) cash prize and plaque is awarded to the recipient.

Selection Process

  • The Award Committee consists of five (5) members plus the section chair of Environmental Studies Section (ESS) of ISA, serving rolling two-year terms as an ex-officio member.
  • The Committee Chair is responsible for notifying the recipient of the award and encouraging the recipient to attend the Annual Convention at which the award is to be presented so as to receive the award in person.
  • The Committee members will begin reading the books as soon as they arrive.

Apply for this Award

  • When nominating an author, please submit a copy of the book to each member of the Award Committee. In order to obtain the mailing addresses of the current committee members, please contact the Sprout Committee chair Raul Pacheco-Vega. Books should not be sent to the Sprout award committee prior to April of the year of nomination in order to ensure that all entries are received by the appropriate committee members who are elected at the ISA annual meeting.
  • The nominations deadline is August 1st.


Congratulations to Jessica Steinberg, 2020's recipient of the Harold and Margaret Sprout Award for Mines, Communities, and States: The Local Politics of Natural Resource Extraction in Africa.

For a list of past recipients, please check below.

Past Recipients


Raul Pacheco Vega | Chair
May 2021- May 2022
Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales (FLACSO) México

Meet the Committee

Award Chairs please review dates to ensure deadlines are met.

Key Dates