OPINION25 January 2012

No guts no glory


A new award aims to recognise those who have shown exceptional bravery in the name of research.

The Ginny Valentine Badge of Courage, named in honour of the semiotics pioneer who died just over a year ago, is to be awarded by the Research Liberation Front in March.

The RLF describes itself as a band of “research revolutionaries” battling against all that is bland and unimaginative in the industry, and in 2007 it named Valentine as its number one revolutionary researcher.

The Badge of Courage will be the second award to bear Valentine’s name, following the introduction last year of the MRS’s Virginia Valentine Award for Cultural Insights – which was initiated and sponsored by Truth, where Valentine was a partner from 2007.

John Griffiths of the RLF says the idea of the Badge of Courage is not to recognise “rigour” or “cleverness” but to reward someone who has demonstrated sheer “guts and determination” in seeing research through.

That might mean overcoming obstacles, facing down opposition, implementing findings, pioneering new approaches, or setting up new ventures.

The winner will be decided by a panel of researchers and non-researchers (including both clients and suppliers) who will hear submissions in front of a live audience at an event on 20 March and make their decision there and then.

If you’re feeling courageous, or know somebody else who might be, you can find more information and details of how to submit an entry on the RLF’s website.