Every year IAMCR awards a prize in memory of Herbert I. Schiller, Dallas W. Smythe or Stuart Hall to a student or early-career scholar for a paper of high standard that reflects the critical traditions embodied by these three scholars. The 2019 prize in memory of Herbert I. Schiller was awarded in Madrid, the 2020 prize in memory of Dallas W. Smythe during the Tampere 2020 online conference, and the 2021 prize in memory of Stuart Hall during the Nairobi 2021 online conference.
IAMCR Prize in Memory of Dallas W. Smythe
Professor Dallas Smythe was a founder of the field of political economy of communication and a leading scholar and influence in national and international communication policy. Trained as an economist, Smythe's professional career included appointments at the Department of Labor and the Federal Communication Commission in the United States, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the University of Regina. He was Professor of Communication at Simon Fraser University, Canada from 1976 till his death in 1992.
Dallas Smythe was an active member of IAMCR. He established the Communication Satellites Section which later became known as the Communication Policy & Technology Section and he was an active participant in the Political Economy Section.
Read Bill Melody's 1992 article "Dallas Smythe: A Lifetime at the Frontier of Communications" and see a video produced by Simon Fraser University in which Smythe talks about his work, including (at 7:30) about his involvement with IAMCR.
"In the mid-sixties IAMCR was a small group dominated by a few people from a few highly industrialised countries. There had been a need for an association of communication researchers from all over the world from the developing as well as the developed countries. I've tried to move the organisation in that direction with some success. We now include researchers from all over the world. Our last biannual meeting was in Prague  and our next is in India ."
IAMCR Prize in Memory of Herbert I. Schiller
The Herbert Schiller prize was established at IAMCR's Singapore Conference to celebrate Herbert's lasting contribution to communications scholarship and to remember his work in helping to establish IAMCR as a open, hospitable and vital space of debate, as one of the founders of the Political Economy Section and as Vice President of the Association.
Herbert embodied the very best traditions of intellectual life, as a scholar, as an influential writer, as an engaged critic and public orator, and above all, as an inspirational teacher who encouraged younger scholars to develop work that challenges accepted orthodoxies and centers of power and opens up new questions for analysis and debate.
IAMCR Prize in Memory of Stuart Hall
Stuart Hall was born in Kingston, Jamaica on February 3, 1932 and attended Jamaica College. He won the Rhodes Scholarship and left Jamaica in 1951 to study in Merton College at Oxford University in England. His experiences and analyses of race, popular culture and anti-colonial struggles fashioned his early scholarship, leading to an exceptional and distinguished career in cultural studies and communications theories.
Hall's theoretical constructs, including original and influential ideas on Encoding and Decoding in communication discourses, Multiculturalism and Ethnicity in Sociology and his re-conceptualization of Reception Theory, among others, all earned him wide respect and admiration by several generations of academics and communication scholars around the world.
Stuart Hall's early scholarship from the political left, advanced to new levels after he moved to Birmingham in the British Midlands, where, under the leadership of writer and academic Richard Hoggart, he served as a Research Fellow and later Director of the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies at Birmingham University. Hall is regarded as the founder of the modern discipline of 'Cultural Studies'. He developed an impressive body of work on issues of cultural hegemony, identity and communication.
He became Professor of Sociology at the Open University in the UK in 1979, remaining there until 1998, when he retired in the capacity of Professor Emeritus. Hall remained active as a critical scholar and leading intellectual throughout his retirement, until his death on February 10, 2014, one week after his 82nd birthday.
The Stuart Hall Prize was established at IAMCR's Hyderabad Conference during a tribute to celebrate his lasting contribution to communications scholarship and to remember his work. See the videos of the tribute.