WHA Dissertation Prize

The World History Association awards the annual WHA Dissertation Prize for the best doctoral dissertation in world, global, or transnational history—that is, one that examines any historical issue with global implications, including but not limited to the exchange and interchange of cultures, the comparison of two or more civilizations or cultures, or the study in a macrohistorical manner of a phenomenon that had a global impact. To be eligible for the 2017 prize, the dissertation must have been defended as part of Ph.D. or equivalent degree between the dates of 31 August 2014 and 21 August 2017.

The prize, which consists of a $500 award, a certificate, and a one-year membership to the WHA, will be awarded at the WHA’s 2018 conference in Milwaukee if the awardee is in attendance.

The deadline for submission of entries for the 2017 prize has now passed. The submission period for the 2018 prize will open in August 2018.

The Dissertation Prize Committee, chaired by David Northrup, professor emeritus of history at Boston College, will determine the winner of the prize. In the event that the committee considers that the quality of the entries does not warrant the awarding of any prize, it shall have the right to make no award.

Contact the WHA with any questions regarding the prize or its guidelines.

Past Winners


  • Sara Silverstein: “Doctors as Diplomats: The Origins of Universal Healthcare in International Society”


  • Barry McCarron: “The Global Irish and Chinese: Migration, Exclusion, and Foreign Relations among Empires, 1784–1904”

Honorable mentions

  • Kathryn Hain: “The Slave Trade of European Women to the Middle East and Asia from Antiquity to the Ninth Century”
  • Isaiah Wilner: “Raven Cried for Me: Narratives of Transformation on the Northwest Coast of America”


  • Patrick Kelly: “Sovereignty and Salvation: Transnational Human Rights Activism in the Americas in the Long 1970s”

Honorable mention

  • Phillip Guingona: “Crafted Links and Accidental Connections of Empire: A History of Early Twentieth-Century Sino-Philippine Interaction


  • Bryce Beemer: “The Creole City in Southeast Asia: Slave Gathering Warfare and Culture Exchange in Burma, Thailand, and Manipur, 1752–1885”