Charles Darwin Award and Marsh Prize

This Award is presented in partnership with the Zoological Society of London and recognises the best zoological project by an undergraduate student attending a university in Great Britain or Northern Ireland.

The projects are judged by a panel of experts from the ZSL, who then select the winning study.

The Zoological Society of London is an international scientific, conservation and educational charity whose mission is to promote and achieve the worldwide conservation of animals and their habitats.

(2014 Awards were presented in 2015)

The 2014 winner is Benjamin Hopkins

Benjamin won this Award for his project ‘The role of the accessory gland secondary cells in mediating sperm competition in Drosophila’, carried out at the University of Oxford.

In this exceptional study, Benjamin uses a range of cutting-edge molecular techniques to unravel the function of the accessory gland secondary cells in reproduction, and he was able to show how these cells affect sperm competiveness and female fertility.

The research was technically challenging, and Benjamin’s interpretation of the results was sophisticated and insightful. The project revealed Benjamin’s impressive breadth of knowledge about the molecular biology of male Drosophila seminal-fluid proteins and he has a very good understanding of the evolutionary implications of the findings, particularly in the context of sexual-selection theory.

Pictured: Benjamin Hopkins


The Zoological Society of London
Regent's Park



Previous Winners:

2013 Mark Scherz

2012 Katrina Spensley

2011 Marius Wenzel

2010 Rudi Verspoor

2009 Haihan Tan