The Jonathan Woodham Awards are made annually for the best pieces of work in any medium informed to a significant extent (but not necessarily wholly) by research in the University of Brighton Design Archives. It must have been created in the preceding academic year. One award is made to a postgraduate student (£1,000), and one to an undergraduate student (£250). This has been made possible through the generosity of Emeritus Professor Jonathan M Woodham who retired from the university in May 2017 after 35 years of service.


The awards are open to BA (Hons), MA and PhD students of the University of Brighton, working in a field informed by design history, broadly understood. Students from any course may access the Design Archives and create work. However, in the inaugural year of the undergraduate award, promotion will initially be focussed on key cohorts in Architecture, Humanities & Social Science, and Art & Media.

The Undergraduate Award will be nominated by course teams and is for the highest scoring piece of assessed work that draws on the Design Archives. The Postgraduate Award is open to any PG student whose chosen work effectively incorporates research undertaken in the Design Archives.


Undergraduate students: this process will be overseen by Course Teams.

Postgraduate students are invited to self-nominate their work using this form.

Selection and award-giving

Both awards will be made for excellence in the understanding and interpretation of archival sources leading to significant pieces of writing or creative practice. The criteria on which work will be evaluated are: the rigour of archival investigation; and the creative end to which it is put.

Undergraduate award: This will be merit based and not involve a panel assessment. The award will be made in person to the student at the degree show celebration event in July.

Postgraduate award: The Design Archives senior team will review the work alongside external experts and determine the winner. The award will be given in the autumn (after PG courses are completed). The winner will be invited to meet Professor Woodham and the Design Archives team, ideally in person, dependent on the student’s availability and proximity to Brighton. If necessary, this engagement might take place online.