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Mary Ann Liebert Publishers and New Space Journal Announce Annual "Best Paper by an Early Career Researcher" Competition

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers and the New Space journal (NSJ) editors are pleased to announce the establishment of a competition that will award an annual purse of U.S.$1,500.00 as part of a new program entitled the "Best Paper by an Early Career Researcher" (BP) prize.

The intent of the prize is to encourage NSJ submissions by researchers who are 35 years old or younger, and who have never before published in a peer-reviewed journal. The BP prize will recognize their exemplary effort as judged by the NSJ reviewers and editorial board. The rules of the competition are detailed below.

  1. The competition is open to anyone who has never published in a peer-reviewed journal before, and is 35 years or younger at any time during the entirety of the calendar year for which the award is given (also known as the "award year" or "AY"). Applicants will be required to sign a statement attesting to this fact.
  2. The competition is open to individuals or teams from academia, industry, and government as well as students and private groups.
  3. The following individuals, even if part of a group of coauthors, may not apply: (1) current employees or volunteers of Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers or the NSJ (including current members of the editorial board), or (2) current employees, interns, or volunteers of the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration.
  4. If the winning author or any of the winning authors comes from a country subject to an embargo or sanction by the U.S. government at the time of the award, written verification regarding the legality of purse payment will be required from the appropriate U.S. government agency before the award can be issued.
  1. The paper must be submitted to the NSJ via normal manuscript submission processes and meet all submission requirements. Instructions for authors and manuscript submission are available in every issue of the NSJ and on the web at the following URL:
  2. Before the paper is accepted for publication, the corresponding author must notify the NSJ editor or associate editor that the manuscript is a submission to the BP prize competition.
  1. The language of all submissions must be English.
  2. The paper must include original, unpublished content and research. Papers presented at conferences but not published in any other journal are eligible to compete in this competition.
  3. In order to be considered eligible for the award offered in a given year, the paper must meet all criteria for acceptance and be published in the NSJ during the AY.
  1. Judging in the competition will be performed using a 5-point scale (1 is "poor" and 5 is "excellent") and the following criteria and weighting factors:
    • Scientific content and detail (40%)
    • Originality (40%)
    • Description of concept (20%)
  2. An overall score can be calculated based on the ratings and weighting factors described above. Each reviewer will be asked to judge at least two or more papers, depending on the number of submissions received before the deadline.
Payment of Award
  1. The total purse of U.S.$1,500.00 per year will be awarded as a single prize to the winning author(s) of the BP prize.
  2. The award will be paid out no later than 60 days after the winning paper has been selected.
  3. There is no limit to the number of authors on a single paper submission. However, the prize purse will be evenly split between all eligible authors of the winning paper, regardless of how many people collaborated on the paper.
  4. In the case that the winning author or any of the winning authors are forbidden from receiving the financial award due to U.S. embargo or sanction, noneconomic recognition will be provided and no prize purse will be awarded for that AY.
  1. By submitting an entry, authors agree to permit NSJ and the Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation to use their names, affiliations, and headshot pictures in informational materials or publicity messaging connected to the competition.
  2. Authors will select from and abide by the standard set of copyright claims used for all NSJ publications.
  1. The prize would be awarded follow a repeating schedule with a 12-month cycle, beginning in the AY.
    • Papers appear in NSJ during the AY: January 1–December 31, AY
    • Judging of submissions in the March issue: April 1–May 1, AY
    • Judging of submissions in the June issue: July 1–August 1, AY
    • Judging of submissions in the September issue: October 1–November 1, AY
    • Judging of submissions in the December issue: January 1–February 1, AY+1
    • Final tally of submission scores: February 1–15, AY+1
    • Public announcement of winning author/paper: March 1, AY+1
All questions and comments regarding the Best Paper by an Early Career Researcher prize competition can be sent to