RUSI Awards and Prizes

We've been recognising influential thinkers for their contribution to the practice and understanding of defence and security since 1831.


RUSI awards the following prizes in recognition of excellence.

Chesney Gold Medal

The Chesney Gold Medal is the highest award in the gift of the Council of the Royal United Services Institute.

The medal is awarded to mark a life-long distinguished contribution to international defence and security, to the benefit of the United Kingdom and/or the international community. It was first awarded in 1900 to Captain Alfred Thayer Mahan of the US Navy, and recipients since have included Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher and Dr Henry Kissinger, among others.

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The Duke of Wellington Medal for Military History

The Duke of Wellington Medal for Military History aims to reward on an annual basis the best English language writing on military history, interpreted widely to include the role of the armed forces, the conduct of wars, and the impact of conflict on nations and societies, over any period up to the present day.

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Trench Gascoigne Essay Prize

RUSI’s annual essay competition is awarded for original writing on contemporary issues of national and international defence and security.

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Chesney Gold Medal

The Chesney Gold Medal is the highest award in the gift of the Council of the Royal United Services Institute.

Duke of Wellington Medal for Military History

This Medal is awarded on an annual basis to the best English language writing on military history.

Trench Gascoigne Essay Prize

Dating back to 1874, the Trench Gascoigne Essay Prize reflects and reinforces the Institute's status as a uniquely placed platform for free thinking debate.