New! I2SL Sustainable Laboratories
Awards Program

The mission of I2SL is to encourage resource efficiency and environmental sustainability in the planning, design, engineering, operation, and use of laboratories and related high-tech facilities. To keep pace with progress being made for sustainability in laboratory environments and scientific research, the I2SL Sustainable Laboratories Awards Program recognizes outstanding people, projects, and programs exhibiting innovative and exemplary achievements in sustainable laboratories. There are three distinct categories of recognition:

The competition recognizes cutting-edge sustainable laboratory innovation and best practices by leveraging I2SL’s reputation as the leading organization for sustainable, safe, and efficient laboratories. An I2SL Sustainable Laboratories Award provides global recognition and credibility to awardees. Award winners are publicized internationally through the I2SL Annual Conference, I2SL chapters, the I2SL website, webinars, and I2SL’s communications and social media channels.

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Applicants who were nominated for a 2022 award will be notified of their status by late summer 2022. Winners will be recognized at the Awards Luncheon during the I2SL Annual Conference and Technology Fair on October 18. If you want to verify that your nomination was received, email info@i2sl.org.

The 2022 I2SL Sustainable Laboratories Awards submission period is now closed. Please review the catergories and criteria below to start thinking about your 2023 application.

Phil Wirdzek Leadership Award

This award will recognize outstanding individuals, teams, or organizations within the I2SL community that are champions of I2SL’s goals and mission. Nominations should describe how the individual(s) have taken action to improve sustainable laboratory design, sustainability within laboratories and scientific research, the resulting impacts, and any steps taken to broaden the reach and impact of the effort. Efforts can focus on any of a variety of sustainability topics, including resource efficiency, environmental performance, social equity and justice, resiliency, safety, decarbonization, green labs, best practices, and more. Nominations should include any results from individual or team efforts and can include testimonials from colleagues, descriptions of relevant awards, and other evidence of the nominee's efforts to make laboratory and other high-tech facilities more sustainable. Entries shall be limited to no more than 5 total pages and should be submitted in English in Word or PDF format in 12-point font in a file no larger than 20 MB. Entries should be emailed to info@i2sl.org with the subject line “2022 Award Application” and contact information of whomever should be contacted about your award status.

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Sustainable Laboratory Award for Buildings or Projects

Having the laboratory building as its primary focus, the Sustainable Laboratory Award will recognize projects or buildings in three categories:

  • New Construction
  • Renovation/Retrofit
  • Adaptive Reuse

This is not an architectural or engineering design award, except to the extent that the design furthers the objectives mentioned below. Entries should describe those features and results that improved laboratory sustainability, including—but not limited to—the following criteria:

  • Decarbonization
  • Energy Efficiency
  • Water Efficiency
  • Waste Reduction, Recycling and Diversion
  • Indoor Environmental/Air Quality Management
  • Operations and Maintenance (O&M)
  • Environmental Health and Safety
  • Long-Term Financial Assurance and Cost-Effectiveness
  • Resiliency
  • Continuous Improvement
  • Sustainable Materials/Purchasing Practices
  • Social Justice/Equity

Entries can include written descriptions of the project goals and features; tables of information; photographs; links to videos; energy/water usage and cost savings data; benchmarking results; economic and life cycle analyses; testimonials; descriptions of relevant certifications or awards the project has received; and any other information that the entrant believes will help the judges evaluate projects’ efforts to make the laboratory more sustainable.

The entries will be evaluated by a jury of lab architecture, engineering, and construction industry experts. Depending on the quality of the entries, the judges may award a first place and multiple honorable mention awards in each of the three categories of New Construction, Renovation/Retrofit, and Adaptive Reuse. The judges can also decide that no award be given in a category if the entries are not of sufficient quality. Entries must have been substantially completed and operational for at least one year preceding the competition year entry date and cannot be more than five years old.

Winning entrants are encouraged to submit a short case study (see examples on the I2SL website at https://www.i2sl.org/resources/casestudies.html) of their project for posting and recognition on the I2SL website. Winners are also encouraged to submit case studies for presentation at I2SL’s Annual Conference, as well as presenting their project as an I2SL webinar or inclusion in an I2SL Best Practice Guide.

Entries should be submitted in English in a Word or PDF file with a maximum of 12 pages, 8.5x11-inch page size, 12-point font, and no greater than 20 MB in size. Entries should be emailed to info@i2sl.org with the subject line “2022 Award Application” and contact information of whomever should be contacted about your award status.

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Lab Sustainability Award for Programs or Initiatives

These awards will recognize outstanding laboratory sustainability programs or initiatives, rather than the laboratory building itself. This award category focuses on the people, programs, and initiatives within the lab itself that improve or enhance sustainability. Entries can focus on one or all of the following aspects:

  1. Sustainable laboratory operations: Operations or initiatives that promote sustainable laboratory operations. This could range from one initiative in a green lab program to an entire green lab program, as long as it promotes the operational aspect(s) of running sustainable laboratories.
  2. Lab management and operational practices implemented by labs that reduce, reuse, recycle, and/or compost waste that would otherwise be sent to landfills.
  3. Manufacturer initiatives from suppliers, either standalone or in partnership with labs, to eliminate waste upstream and/or downstream within the value chain, and promotes a circular economy.

The entries will be evaluated by a jury of experts in the field of laboratory sustainability. Depending on the quality of the entries, the judges may award a first place and multiple honorable mention awards. The judges may also decide that no award be given if the entries are not of sufficient quality. Projects and initiatives must have been substantially completed or in operation for at least one year preceding the competition year entry date and cannot be more than five years old.

Winning entrants are encouraged to submit a short summary describing their program or initiative and provide any metrics and quantifiable results from sustainability efforts. In addition to having their description posted on the I2SL website, winners may be encouraged to submit abstracts for presentation at I2SL’s Annual Conference, present their entry as an I2SL webinar, or submit more information about the effort as an I2SL Best Practice Guide.

Entries should be submitted in English in a Word or PDF file with of maximum 5 pages, 8.5x11-inch page size, 12-point font, and no greater than 20 MB in size. Entries should be emailed to info@i2sl.org with the subject line “2022 Award Application” and contact information of whomever should be contacted about your award status.

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