The Center has sponsored the Bowlby-Ainsworth Award since 2003. This award recognizes senior scholars who exemplify the standards of scholarship, collegiality and service that John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth shared, taught, and valued. Awards are also made to younger researchers for specific contributions of lasting importance. Special Awards are occasionally given in recognition of singular contributions to the Bowlby-Ainsworth tradition. Selections are made by the Awards Committee of the Center For Mental Health Promotion and The New York Attachment Consortium, in consultation with distinguished colleagues from several continents. The Award is represented by a crystal sculpture engraved with the portraits of John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth, the recipients’ name, and a brief award statement.

Nominations for Senior and Special Awards are made by the Awards Committee and past Awardees. The Committee welcomes nominations of younger colleagues (recent full professor or younger) who have made specific contributions that deserve to be highlighted. Nominations should be submitted electronically and include a copy of the nominee’s curriculum vitae and 1-3 reprints (in .pdf format) representing the nominated work and a statement of 300 words or less explaining the significance of the specific theoretical or empirical contribution and the nominee’s potential for contributing to the Bowlby-Ainsworth tradition. Nomination by one person is sufficient for consideration. Nominations should be submitted one time only. Consideration is not limited to the year in which a nomination is received.


The Bowlby-Ainsworth award is presented at a reception that is held every two years in conjunction with the biannual meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development. This has provided the best venue for honoring the current awardees as typically there is a large gathering of the friends and colleagues of those receiving the awards already at the meeting. In addition to being able to bring a spotlight on the awardees, the reception has also proven to be a fruitful arena for the exchange of ideas among colleagues who may not normally have a chance to interact. We have heard of many productive collaborations that have resulted from this. Also, since the inception of the reception in 2003 we have always made a point of including students of the faculty members that are invited. We've received a great deal of positive feedback from these attendees as they've been able to directly interact with other students as well as faculty from other institutions who up to that point may have been just names in a bibliography.



The Bowlby-Ainsworth Award