The Reid Prize

For the most significant book contributing to the understanding of Asia

The Reid Prize recognises work that has made an exemplary contribution to understanding of Asia. The prize was established to acknowledge the importance of ongoing efforts to deepen public understanding internationally of Asian cultures, politics, histories and societies. 

This prize will be awarded biennially to the book that has best advanced the understanding of Asia in the last four years. This may include fiction, non-fiction, academic books and translations into English of major works originally authored by Asian writers. Eligible authors/ translators must be based in Australia or New Zealand, or Australian/New Zealand citizens currently residing in Asia.

In 2022 the prize awarded will be to the value of AUD$8,000.

The prize will be administered by the ASAA Council. Nominations will be compiled by the Reid Prize Search Committee and judged by an independent panel of a minimum of three (3) judges drawn from academic experts of Asia to be appointed by the ASAA executive.

In 2022 the jurors for the Reid prize will be Professor Michele Ford, Emeritus Professor Purnendra Jain, and Honorary Professor Kam Louie

The prize winner will be invited to give the Reid Lecture at the biennial ASAA conference. In addition to the cash prize, the cost of an economy airfare within Australia or from New Zealand (if needed), two (2) nights accommodation and taxi transfers will be covered.

This prize was generously endowed by Tony and Helen Reid (read more about Tony and Helen here)

Tony and Helen Reid at the AAS in 2010.

Eligibility and nomination criteria

The book must:

  • have been published during the four (4) calendar years immediately prior to the first day of January of the year in which it is to be awarded (To be eligible for the Inaugural 2022 Reid Prize books must be published no earlier than 1 January 2018)
  • be by author/translators who are based in Australia or New Zealand, or Australian/New Zealand citizens resident in Asia
  • be nominated by members of the Reid Prize Search Committee or a third party (‘third party’ in this instance includes members of ASAA or NZASIA who may send recommendations for nominations to the Reid Prize Search Committee by 15 November 2021 via the Reid Prize Secretariat at
  • meet the selection criteria

Selection criteria

The book must:

  • in the opinion of the judges, have made a significant contribution to promote understanding of Asia internationally
  • have had substantial public impact as demonstrated by a wide readership and significant public engagement with the work

Nomination process

In order to ensure the quality of applications the ASAA will form a Reid Prize Search Committee. The ASAA will invite the ASAA Prize representative, the president of the ASAA, and the presidents or nominees of the following councils to sit on the Committee:

  • Asian Australian Research Network
  • Association of Mainland Southeast Asian Studies (AMSEAS)
  • Indonesia Council
  • Korean Studies Association of Australia
  • Society of Architecture Urban Historians of Asia

Enquiries from authors and publishers are welcome; please contact Jemma Purdey

Nominations Open: 6 September 2021

Nominations Close: 15 November 2021

Search Committee

Each member of the Search Committee will be provided with a standard nomination form and asked to prepare a case (max 500 words) detailing how the nominated book has made a significant contribution to promoting understanding of Asia internationally.

To make the case for a substantial public impact the submission should include evidence of a wide readership and significant public engagement with the work. Supporting documentary evidence such as reviews may be included. The submission must include full details of the book, the author and publisher. Members of the Search Committee may contact nominees for help in compiling information.

ASAA Prize Representative

All nominations will be checked for eligibility and against the selection criteria by the ASAA Prize representative for further consideration before being presented to the judges. The prize representative will also specifically seek out fiction and translation potential nominations.


Read our FAQ page here.

Judging Guidelines for the prize can be downloaded here.