☰ Menu
Join/Renew SHOT Contribute to SHOT

Sidney Edelstein Prize

Updated 19 April 2024

It is not possible anymore to nominate books for the 2024 Edelstein Prize. The nomination deadline has passed.

The Edelstein Prize

The Edelstein Prize is awarded to the author of an outstanding scholarly book in the history of technology published during the preceding three years (so, books eligible for the 2024 award will have been published in 2021-2023. Non-English language books are eligible for three years following the date of their English translation.

Previously known as the Dexter Prize, the Edelstein Prize was established in 1968 through the generosity of the late Sidney Edelstein, a noted expert on the history of dyes and dye processes, founder of the Dexter Chemical Corporation, and 1988 recipient of SHOT’s Leonardo da Vinci Award. The prize, donated by Ruth Edelstein Barish and her family in memory of Sidney Edelstein and his commitment to excellence in scholarship in the history of technology, consists of an award of $3,500 and a plaque.

Publishers and authors are invited to nominate titles for this prize. To nominate a book, all committee members listed below need to receive a copy of the nominated book before the deadline passes. This book is considered the award for the committee members for their work. After completing the submission you will receive a confirmation e-mail with further instructions and mail addresses of the committee members. Since 2020 you can nominate books via our online submission system, and include an e-copy.

For more information, please contact the SHOT Secretariat, [email protected].

Winner of the 2023 Edelstein Prize Stephan F. Miescher (left) and SHOT President Gabrielle Hecht. (Photo SHOT)


2024 Edelstein Prize Committee

Maria-Paula Diogo (2023-2025) – Chair
NOVA School of Science and Technology FCT-NOVADavid
C. Brock (2022-2024) – Chair
Computer History Museum
Edna Suarez-Diaz (2024-2026)
Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM)

Recipients of the Edelstein Prize*

2023 Stephan F. Miescher, G: A Dam for Africa: Akosombo Stories from Ghana (Indiana University Press, 2022)
2022 Sarah A. Seo, G: Policing the Open Road: How Cars Transformed American Freedom (Harvard University Press, 2019)
2021 Gijs Mom, Globalizing Automobilism: Exuberance and the Emergence of Layered Mobility, 1900-1980 (New York: Berghahn Books, 2020)
2020 Due to the Covid-19 situation the 2020 Prize has not been awarded
2019 Pamela O. Long, Engineering the Eternal City: Infrastructure, Topography, and the Culture of Knowledge in Late Sixteenth-Century Rome(University of Chicago Press, 2018)
2018 Edward Jones-Imhotep, The Unreliable Nation: Hostile Nature and Technological Failure in the Cold War (The MIT Press, 2017)
2017 William Rankin, After the Map. Cartography, Navigation and the Transformation of Territory in the Twentieth Century (University of Chicago Press, 2016)
2016 William Boyd, The Slain Wood: Papermaking and its Environmental Consequences in the American South (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2015)
2015 Christopher F. Jones, Routes of Power: Energy and Modern America (Harvard University Press, 2014)
2014 S. Lochlann Jain, Malignant: How Cancer Becomes Us (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2013)
2013 Aileen Fyfe, Steam-Powered Knowledge: William Chambers and the Business of Publishing, 1820-1860 (University of Chicago Press, 2012)
2012 Eden Medina, Cybernetic Revolutionaries: Technology and Politics in Allende’s Chile (MIT Press, 2011)
2011 Joy Parr, Sensing Changes:Technologies, Environments, and the Everyday, 1953-2003 (University of British Columbia Press, 2010)
2010 Jennifer Karns Alexander, The Mantra of Efficiency: From Waterwheel to Social Control (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008)
2009 William Kelleher Storey, Guns, Race, and Power in Colonial South Africa (Cambridge University Press, 2008)
2008 Christine MacLeod, Heroes of Invention: Technology, Liberalism and British Identity, 1750-1914 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007)
2007 Gregory Clancey, Earthquake Nation: The Cultural Politics of Japanese Seismicity, 1868–1930 (University of California Press, 2006)
2006 Christine Cogdell, Eugenic Design: Streamlining America in the 1930s (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004)
2005 Emily Thompson, The Soundscape of Modernity: Architectural Acoustics and the Culture of Listening in America, 1900-1933 (MIT Press, 2002)
2004 Angela Lakwete, Inventing the Cotton Gin: Machine and Myth in Antebellum America (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003)
2003 Edmund Russell, War and Nature: Fighting Humans and Insects with Chemicals from World War I to Silent Spring (Cambridge University Press, 2001)
2002 Martin V. Melosi, The Sanitary City: Urban Infrastructure in America from Colonial Times to the Present (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000)
2001 Gabrielle Hecht, The Radiance of France: Nuclear Power and National Identity after World War II (The MIT Press, 1998)
2000 Paul Israel, Edison, A Life of Invention (New York: John Wiley, 1998)
1999 Francesca Bray, Technology and Gender: Fabrics of Power in Late Imperial China (University of California Press, 1997)
1998 Ken Alder, Engineering the Revolution: Arms and Enlightenment in France, 1763-1815 (Princeton University Press, 1997)
1997 Thomas J. Misa, A Nation of Steel: The Making of Modern America, 1865-1925 (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995); and Michael J. Neufeld, The Rocket and the Reich: Peenemünde and the Coming of the Ballistic Missile Era (Harvard University Press, 1995)
1996 Jeffrey Meikle, American Plastic: A Cultural History (Rutgers University Press, 1995)
1995 Claude Fischer, America Calling: A Social History of the Telephone to 1940 (University of California Press, 1992)
1994 John H. White, Jr., The American Railroad Freight Car: From the Wood-Car to the Coming of Steel (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1992)
1993 David Nye, Electrifying America: Social Meanings of a New Technology (MIT Press, 1990)
1992 Donald Reid, Paris Sewers and Sewermen: Realities and Representations (Harvard University Press, 1991)
1991 Michael Adas, Machines as the Measure of Men: Science, Technology, and Ideologies of Western Dominance (Cornell University Press, 1989)
1990 Geoffrey Parker, The Military Revolution: Military Innovation and the Rise of the West (Cambridge University Press, 1989)
1989 Judith A. McGaw, Most Wonderful Machine: Mechanization and Social Change in Berkshire Paper Making, 1801-1885 (Princeton University Press, 1987), and Anthony F. C. Wallace, St. Clair: A Nineteenth-century Coal Town’s Experience with Disaster-prone Industry (Knopf, 1987)

*Formerly the Dexter prize