ESMO Award

The esteemed ESMO Award was established in 1985 to recognise an ESMO member who has made an outstanding contribution to the development of medical oncology by promoting it as a speciality within the European and/or international community

The award consists of the opportunity to give a scientific lecture, a prize and free registration, free accommodation and reimbursement of travel expenses to ESMO 2017 Congress in Madrid, Spain.

Nomination closed 4 April 2017

Eligibility criteria

In order to be considered for the award, a nominee must:

  • Be an individual (institutions and organisations are not eligible) who has contributed continuously by outstanding scientific contributions to the development of understanding malignancies and/or their treatment
  • Be an ESMO member
  • Be an oncology professional, medical or clinical oncologist
  • Have not previously received the ESMO Award
  • Not be a current or recent (last two years) member of either the  ESMO Executive Board or the  ESMO Fellowship and Award Committee

Nomination and selection process

Nominations may be made by ESMO members* in good standing, and within the stated deadline via the online form established for this purpose. You will be asked to sign in to your myESMO account in order to fill in the nomination form.  Members cannot nominate themselves.

All nominations will be evaluated by the ESMO Fellowship and Award Committee. After careful deliberations by the committee, its recommendations are forwarded to the ESMO Executive Board for final consideration and selection.

Previous ESMO Award winners:

2016– Alberto Sobrero, Italy

Sobrero has been Head of the Medical Oncology Unit at IRCCS San Martino IST in Genova, Italy, since 2001. He was previously Associate Professor in Medical Oncology at the University of Florence and Udine. His main research interests include gastrointestinal cancer treatment and design and interpretation of clinical trials in oncology.

After receiving his medical degree from the University of Genova in 1978, Sobrero took the position of postdoctoral Associate in Medical Oncology at Yale University, Connecticut, USA. In 1983, he became Associate Research Scientist in Medical Oncology at Yale. Before returning to Genova in 1985, he completed a residency in internal medicine at the Yale Affiliated Norwalk Hospital.


Alberto Sorero

One always wonders if he is doing well in his professional life: the ESMO Award is certainly the best answer to this questioning. I am very grateful to Dr J-P. Armand, former ESMO President, who introduced me to the international homes of ESMO and EORTC and inspired me with his professional and human touch. I really felt surprised at receiving this award: being chosen by peers is very gratifying.

Alberto Sobrero, 2016 ESMO Award winner

Alberto Sobrero, 2016 ESMO Award winner

From 2002 to 2006, Sobrero was the Chairman of the Protocol Review Committee of the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) and has been part of the faculty of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and Federation of European Cancer Societies (FECS) clinical research courses in Flims, Switzerland, for seven years. He served on the editorial board of the Journal of Clinical Oncology from 2004 to 2006, and was part of the Scientific Committee of ASCO in 2007 to 2008.

Christoph Zielinski, Chair of the ESMO Fellowship and Award Committee, said: “Prof. Sobrero has not only very broadly and prominently co-authored more than 200 original contributions on very important issues mainly relevant to colorectal cancer where he is considered a leading world expert, but has also cooperated to a large extent within the European Society for Medical Oncology.”

  • 2015 - Nathan Cherny, Israel
  • 2014 - Carsten Bokemeyer, Germany
  • 2013 – Cora Sternberg, Italy
  • 2012 – Ian Tannock, Canada
  • 2011 - Johann de Bono, United Kingdom
  • 2010 - Alberto Costa, Italy
  • 2009 - E.G. Elisabeth de Vries, The Netherlands
  • 2008 - J.P. Armand, France
  • 2007 - J.B. Vermorken, Belgium
  • 2006 - D.J. Kerr, United Kingdom
  • 2005 - J. Baselga, Spain
  • 2004 - A.T. van Oosterom, Belgium
  • 2002 - M. Schneider, France
  • 2000 - R. Souhami, United Kingdom
  • 1998 - D.J.Th. Wagener, The Netherlands
  • 1997 - M. Piccart, Belgium
  • 1995 - S.B. Kaye, United Kingdom
  • 1993 - P. Alberto, Switzerland
  • 1991 - F. Cavalli, Switzerland
  • 1989 - G. Bonadonna, Italy
  • 1987 - H.H. Hansen, Denmark
  • 1985 - H.M. Pinedo, The Netherlands

*All ESMO members are eligible to nominate candidates with the exception of student members (undergraduate medical and science students)