History of the John C. Burnham Early Career Award

John C. Burnham was a guide and support for three organizations, all of which now give early career prizes: Cheiron, European Society for the History of the Human Sciences, and Forum for History of Human Science, whose prize bears his name. In addition, John’s term as editor of Journal of the History of Human Sciences, 1997-2000, was brief but important.

The FHHS award dates to Fall 2002. With the encouragement of John’s students and colleagues, Wiley, the publisher of JHBS, established the FHHS early-career program with a $500 honorarium to be award annually to an early career PhD for the best unpublished paper in the field that would then be intended for publication in JHBS. The FHHS Newsletter from Summer 2002 (v 14, no 1) includes a note from FHHS Chair Paul Croce, where he discusses the establishment of the award: “This year, the Forum presents the first John C. Burnham Early Career Award, which is jointly sponsored by the Forum and The Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences. The name of the award is a token of recognition for John’s outstanding contributions as a professor at Ohio State University, as a scholar of the history of ‘psychology, medicine, and morals’ (to quote from the subtitle of his 1988 book, Paths into American Culture), and, until recently, as editor of JHBS.”

(Information provided by John Carson and David Robinson)