Terms and conditions: Amazon Physical Science Fellowship Competition
NO PURCHASE IS NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. A PURCHASE OR PAYMENT OF ANY KIND WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING.
PLEASE READ THESE OFFICIAL RULES CAREFULLY. BY ACCESSING OR PARTICIPATING IN THE COMPETITION, YOU (“Participant”, “you” “your”) AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THESE OFFICIAL RULES AND ALL TERMS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE TO THESE OFFICIAL RULES, YOU CANNOT PARTICIPATE IN THE COMPETITION.
ELIGIBILITY: The Amazon Physical Science Fellowship Competition (“Competition”) is open for participation by invitation only to natural persons who are legal residents of Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada (excluding Quebec), Switzerland, China, Czech, The Netherlands, Denmark, Spain, Finland, France, United Kingdom, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Germany, Poland, Singapore, Sweden and the fifty United States and the District of Columbia, who are at least 18 years of age at the time of entry or the age of majority in such person’s jurisdiction of residence, whichever is greater, who (i) hold a PhD in Physics or a related discipline, (ii) have a current, or confirmed pending, professorial affiliation with an academic institution with a high-ranking Physics Departments at universities in the referenced jurisdictions (provided that the total duration of such affiliation is not greater than 10 years), and (iii) are invited to participate. Amazon.com Services, LLC (“Sponsor”) and its parent, subsidiary and affiliate companies, employees, agents and suppliers, and the immediate family (spouse, parents, siblings and children) and household members of each such person are not eligible to participate, enter, or win any grant. In the event of a dispute as to the identity of a participant, the individual whom Sponsor invited to participate and whose name is identified in the participating QMarkets account (described below) will be deemed to be the Participant. Potential winners are subject to verification before any grant will be awarded. By participating in the Competition, Participants fully and unconditionally agree and accept these official rules (“Official Rules”) and Sponsor’s decisions, which are final and binding in all matters related to the Competition. Winning a grant is contingent upon fulfilling all requirements set forth herein. VOID WHEREVER PROHIBITED OR RESTRICTED BY LAW.
This Competition will follow the approximate schedule outlined below, subject to adjustment as reasonably necessary:
Registration and Initial Submission Phase: May 29, 2022 to June 18, 2022
Debiasing Phase: June 26, 2022 to July 2, 2022
Curation Phase: July 3, 2022 to July 23, 2022
Judging Phase: July 24, 2022 to September 3, 2022
Interview Phase: September 4, 2022 to September 17, 2022 (Subject to change pending availability of the members of the Review Board)
HOW TO ENTER: The Competition will consist of several phases discussed below.
Pre-Competition Phase: Sponsor will send out invitations to participate in the Competition (“Invitation Email” or collectively, “Invitation Emails”). Creation of an account and use of the QMarkets platform is free of charge for Participants.
Registration and Initial Submission Phase: After potential Participants have received the Invitation Email, they must follow the link to register on Qmarkets and complete a profile by answering all of the questions in the registration form.
Participants must submit three answers to the following question – What scientific results since the year 2000 have had the most profound impact on what you think is possible? Participants must provide the following for each submission (each such submission and collectively, an “Initial Submission”):
- Title of Submission briefly stating the applicable scientific result;
- Category (Participant will select from provided options);
- Paragraph description of the scientific results understandable by an undergraduate in a technical field (limited to 2500 characters);
- Concept (Participant will be able to select multiple responses from provided options);
- URL or DOI to at least one but up to three publications on the applicable scientific result;
- Earliest date of the applicable scientific result; and
- Optional, the names of up to two principal investigators associated with the applicable scientific result.
Participants who submit at least three (3) Initial Submissions by June 18, 2022 will advance to the next stages of the Competition. Only the first three (3) Initial Submissions submitted by Participant will be eligible for judging during any of the subsequent phases. The Sponsor may combine Initial Submissions covering the similar subject matter and each Participant will receive full credit for the Initial Submission.
Debiasing Phase: Participant must vote on which scientific results described in the Initial Submission(s) made available during this phase to Participant has had a more profound impact/or has changed what you think is possible.
Curation Phase: Participant must submit commentaries (each a “Commentary” collectively “Commentaries”) on ten (10) of the Initial Submissions compiled by Sponsor and made available during this phase to Participants. Each Commentary must comply with the Materials Guidelines (defined below).
Participants who submit at least ten (10) Commentaries by July 23, 2022 will advance to the next stages of the Competition. The first ten (10) Commentary provided by a Participant will be considered their portfolio for judging purposes (“Commentary Portfolio”).
Judging Phase: Sponsor will begin the Judging Process which is broken down into two (2) stages:
- Triage Stage: A panel of judges comprised of Sponsor’s personnel will review the Initial Submissions and Commentary Portfolios and will judge them by giving a score from 1-10 in each of the following categories:
- Initial Submissions are clearly written and understandable at the general technical undergraduate level.
- Initial Submissions efficiently and effectively describe a scientific result since the year 2000.
- Initial Submissions are clearly unique and independent from Initial Submissions submitted by other Participants.
- Initial Submissions are innovative and insightful with the potential to change the world.
- Commentary Portfolio is clearly written and understandable at the general technical undergraduate level.
- Commentary Portfolio efficiently and effectively describes the importance of the corresponding results.
- Commentary Portfolio covers results from multiple different scientific disciplines
- Commentary Portfolio covers results that are innovative and insightful with the potential to change the world.
- Commentary Portfolio adds unique insight or perspectives that were not included in the results to which the Commentaries correspond.
Participants will also receive points for each time one of the scientific results identified in their Initial Submissions received a vote in the Debiasing Phase based upon the following equation: [(10) x (# of Votes for that Initial Submission)] / (Highest # of Votes given to any Initial Submission).
The ten (10) Commentary Portfolios with the highest scores will advance to next stage of the Judging Phase unless there are ties in which case up to fifteen (15) Commentary Portfolios with the highest scores will advance to next stage of the Judging Phase.
In case there are ties:
- If the ties lead to fewer than or equal to 15 Commentary Portfolios achieving qualifying scores all 15, or fewer as applicable, respective Participants will advance to the following stage.
- The Commentary Portfolios with the higher score in the category “Commentary Portfolios cover results that are innovative and insightful with the potential to change the world” will be deemed the higher scoring Commentary Portfolios among the tied Commentary Portfolios scores
- In case there are ties leading to more than 15 Commentary Portfolios achieving qualifying scores after 2., the remaining tied Commentary Portfolio(s) with the higher score in the category “Commentary Portfolios efficiently and effectively describe the importance of the corresponding results” will be deemed the higher scoring Commentary Portfolios among the tied Commentary Portfolios scores.
- In case there are ties leading to more than 15 Commentary Portfolios achieving qualifying scores after 3., Sponsor will select and apply successive skill-based judging criteria from the above list to the remaining tied Commentary Portfolios to determine the higher scoring Commentary Portfolios among the tied Commentary Portfolios until there are 15 or fewer Commentary Portfolios remaining. The 10-15 Commentary Portfolio(s) selected in this stage are referred to as the “Shortlist Portfolio.”
- Shortlist Stage: A Review Board of up to ten (10) Sponsor designated individuals will each evaluate the Shortlist Portfolios. Review Board members will give each Shortlist Portfolio a score from 1-10 on each of the following criteria:
- Initial Submissions are innovative and insightful with the potential to change the world
- Commentary Portfolio covers results that are innovative and insightful with the potential to change the world
- Commentary Portfolio adds unique insight or perspectives that were not included in the results to which the Commentary Portfolio corresponds
- Commentary Portfolio offers evidence that the Participant can conceive of novel applications and disruptive technologies
- Commentary Portfolio offers evidence that the Participant can perceive broad significance of specific results in applied research
- Commentary Portfolio offers evidence that the curator can think practically and ambitiously-realistically in both an engineering and business sense
- Commentary Portfolio is clear, informative, and succinct
- Commentary Portfolio offers evidence that the Participant appears to have command over a broad technical area, as opposed to a very specialized field of expertise
- Commentary Portfolio offers evidence that the Participant is aware of emerging technologies and some history of physical sciences-based innovation
In case of any ties in the Shortlist Stage, Sponsor will apply the same tie-breaker criteria identified in the Triage Stage to the tied Shortlist Portfolios except that only five (5) Shortlist Portfolios will be selected. The Participants with the five (5) top scoring Shortlist Portfolios will advance to the next phase (“Finalists”).
Interview Phase: The Finalists will complete a technical interview (the “Technical Interview”) with members of the Review Board. The Finalists who receive the highest scores from the Technical Interviews will be the potential winners of the Competition, subject to verification.
Each Technical Interview will include members of the Review Board where Finalists will be asked substantive questions about their Commentary Portfolio, their area of study, and general knowledge in the Physics field. Review Board members will evaluate Finalists by providing a score from 1-10 in the following categories:
- Number of publications and frequency of science conference attendance.
- Technical command of a relatively broad field.
- Familiarity with (i) applications of physical sciences to the development of technologies and services, (ii) practical impacts of their technical field and (iii) potential applications that are the primary drivers of current research.
- Research and other evidence demonstrate an aptitude for finding surprising solutions to tough problems and/or asking important questions.
- Ability to communicate clearly and succinctly regarding the significance of technical ideas with a non-expert audience; able to adapt the register of their writing/speech for audiences of varying technical expertise.
- Ability to connect basic scientific results with significant contribution to practical methods and technologies
- Earnestly enthusiastic for the Fellow's role and ability of finding ways to turn scientific results into technologies with the ability to improve the world
In case there are ties:
- Finalist with the higher score in the preceding fourth bullet point category above will be deemed the higher scoring Finalist between or among the tied Finalists.
- The remaining tied Finalist (if any) with the higher score in the preceding third bullet point category above will be deemed the higher scoring Finalist between or among the tied Finalists.
WINNER DETERMINATION AND NOTIFICATION: On or about September 25, 2022, potential winners (the “Winners”) will be informed via email that they have been selected pending verification of their qualifications, to be completed no later than October 30, 2022.
Winners must complete the following documents: affidavit of eligibility, tax documentation, and, except where prohibited, a release of liability and a publicity release (collectively, “Winner Documentation”) to receive the Grant (or direct a charity donation if applicable).
GRANT: Up to three (3) Winners will receive Fifty Thousand US Dollars (US$50,000.00) per year for three (3) years ($150,000.00 total for each Winner). Approximate Retail Value (“ARV”) of each Grant: $150,000.00.
Grants may be subject to United States or other jurisdictions’ withholding taxes and/or to taxation in your country of residence. Any valuation of the Grant stated above is based on available information provided to Sponsor and the value of any Grant awarded to a Winner will be reported for tax purposes as required by law. Each winner must provide Sponsor with a valid taxpayer identification number or social security number (as applicable) before any grant will be awarded. Grants may be subject to 25% (or a different amount) federal tax withholding and additional applicable state withholdings depending on winner’s place of residence. Outside of the US, the Winner may be subject to a tax on the value of any grant awarded. The Winners are solely responsible for reporting and paying any and all applicable taxes. The Winners understand and agree that the winners may be responsible for taxes exceeding the amounts listed above, for reasons such as, without limitation, winner’s tax bracket. Winner should consult an accountant or tax professional to determine tax implications in accepting and using any Grant.
Grants may not be transferred, assigned, or substituted. Grants will not be redeemed or exchanged for cash, except where required by law. In no event will more than the stated number of Grants be awarded. No grant substitution or exchange will be allowed, except by the Sponsor, who reserves the right to substitute a grant for a prize of equal or greater value at any time and for any reason.
Winners who cannot accept the grant or direct a charity donation as described below for any reason (including, but not limited to, the terms of their employment and regulations and laws that apply based on their citizenship, location of residence, or location of employment) will be ineligible for receiving the Grant (or directing the charity donation). Italian residents are ineligible for receiving the Grant but are still eligible to receive the title of “Amazon Physical Science Fellow”.
In the case that a potential Fellow (i) is ineligible to receive the Grant, (ii) does not return the completed and executed Winner Documentation by October 30, 2022, or (iii) prefers not to receive the Grant, the fund will be donated to the Association for Women in Science (or if permitted under the applicable laws, regulations and policies, to a non-profit charity of the potential Fellow’s choice from those listed on guidestar.org).
In the event a Grant is forfeited for any reason, including for non-compliance with these Official Rules, Sponsor may disqualify such Finalist and award the Grant to the next highest scoring Finalist.
SUBMISSION AND PORTFOLIO REQUIREMENTS: Participants agree, represent and warrant that all materials, including without limitation Initial Submissions and Commentary Portfolios and parts thereof (“Materials”), submitted to Sponsor at any point during the Competition meet the following requirements (“Material Guidelines”):
- Materials must be in text format and in English language.
- Materials must not include or disclose any trade secret or confidential information.
- Materials must not contain unsafe behavior or situations, profanity, nudity, pornographic images or explicit sexual themes, graphic violence, defamatory or libelous statements, false or misleading advertising, or any other material considered illegal or inappropriate. Materials containing any such aspects and/or that are in violation of a law or otherwise deemed by Sponsor, in its sole discretion, to be prejudicial to Sponsor or any other person or party affiliated with the promotion and administration of this Competition or inappropriate in any way, may be disqualified.
- Initial Submissions and Commentary Portfolios must be the original work of the Participant (except for public domain material that is clearly identified as such in the Initial Submission or Commentary Portfolio) and must be under no restriction, contractual or otherwise, that will prevent Sponsor’s use of the Initial Submission or Commentary Portfolio and each and every aspect of the Initial Submission or Commentary Portfolio must be free of any and all liens, encumbrances, and claims of third parties.
- Materials must not infringe on any copyrights, patents, confidential information, trade secrets, trademarks, or proprietary, industrial, or other rights belonging to any person or entity, or violate any person’s rights of privacy or publicity or violate any law, rule, statute, or order of any jurisdiction.
- Initial Submissions and Commentary Portfolios must be in compliance with Participant’s employer’s policies.
Sponsor may in its sole discretion disqualify any Participant that is responsible for submitting any Material that Sponsor determines violates the Materials Guidelines or the Official Rules. Sponsor may also, in its sole discretion, disqualify any Participant who has engaged or engages in behavior that is disparaging or derogatory of Sponsor, members of the Review Board or any other person or party affiliated with the promotion and administration of this Competition, or of any other Participant. Sponsor may also disqualify any Participant who violates any law, rule, statute, or order of any jurisdiction in connection with the Competition, or whose participation in the Competition results in Sponsor’s, or puts Sponsor at risk of, violation of any law, rule, statute, or order of any jurisdiction. Sponsor may also disqualify any potential or confirmed winner (a) who has engaged or engages in behavior that: (i) is illegal; (ii) (as determined by Sponsor in its sole and absolute discretion) is inappropriate, threatening, illegal or that is intended to annoy, abuse, threaten, harass, victimize, degrade, or intimidate any other individual or group of individuals on the basis of religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, age, or disability; or (b) in the reasonable opinion of Sponsor expose Sponsor to disrepute, contempt, scandal or ridicule, or shock, insult or offend the public; and in each case Sponsor reserves the right to not award the potential winner a Grant, or to withdraw or terminate any Grant already awarded. Each Participant further agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Sponsor and each of their respective employees, officers, directors, and agents from and against any claims, lawsuits, liabilities, and expenses (including attorney’s fees) arising out of the use of the Materials submitted in the Competition and/or their participation in the Competition By participating in the Competition, each Participant further agrees at all times to be in compliance with all relevant anti-bribery and anti-corruption laws, and Participant’s employers’ internal anti-bribery, anti-corruption, gifts and other relevant policies. Participant is solely responsible for compliance with any applicable laws, rules and regulations, contractual limitations and/or school or company policies, if any, regarding Participant’s participation in the Competitions, Submissions, and acceptance and use of any Grant.
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY: Participant hereby grants to Sponsor and its affiliates, and each of their respective licensees, successors and assigns (the “Sponsor Parties”) a nonexclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, freely transferable and sublicensable, royalty-free right and license to use, promote, transmit, reproduce, copy, modify, publicly distribute, publicly display and prepare derivative works based on the Participant’s submitted Materials, in whole or in part, including all copyrights and other intellectual property rights therein, throughout the universe for all or any purposes whatsoever, including without limitation for the purpose of advertising, publicity, promotion, and/or other marketing for Sponsor, its products or services, and/or the Participant’s Materials, in any and all media or form of distribution now known or hereafter developed.
PUBLICITY: By participating in the Competition, participants consent to the use of their names, biographical information, Initial Submissions, images and/or likenesses in any manner and in any medium for any purpose in connection with the Competition, including worldwide, without additional compensation, except where prohibited by law.
PRIVACY: Information submitted by you is subject to Sponsor’s privacy notice. Whenever we transfer personal information to countries outside of the European Economic Area or the UK, we ensure that the information is transferred in accordance with this privacy notice and as permitted by the applicable laws on data protection. We rely on European Commission adequacy decisions or use contracts with standard safeguards published by the European Commission and similar measures under UK laws for such transfers. In addition, Sponsor will share your personal information with third parties that have a need to know, such as the Review Board, and by participating, you agree to the sharing of your information with the Review Board.
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ERRORS AND UNAUTHORIZED ACTIVITIES: In the event that the operation, security, or administration of the Competition is impaired in any way for any reason, including without limitation, fraud, virus or other technical problem, or any other reason beyond the control of Sponsor, Sponsor may, in its sole discretion, either: (a) suspend the Competition; or (b) cancel or terminate the Competition. Sponsor reserves the right to modify grant award procedures. Any attempt by any person to undermine the legitimate operation of the Competition may be a violation of criminal and civil law, and should such an attempt be made, Sponsor reserve the right to seek damages from any such person to the fullest extent permitted by law. Sponsor’s failure to enforce any provision of these Official Rules shall not constitute a waiver of that provision. Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to cancel or suspend this Competition should virus, bugs, fraud, hacking, or other causes corrupt the administration, security, or proper play of the Competition or in the event Sponsor does not receive a minimum of two qualified entries from separate eligible Entrant Teams. Sponsor further reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to cancel or suspend this Competition or to reschedule or reformat events, should Sponsor be prevented, in any manner whatsoever, from holding this Competition or any event due to any present or future law (whether or not valid); any act of God, earthquake, fire, flood, epidemic (including, without limitation, any pandemic), accident, explosion or casualty; any civil disturbance or armed conflict; or any other cause of any similar nature outside of Sponsor’s control. In all such cases, notice to this effect will be posted on the Competition Site and prizes to the extent awarded will be awarded as determined by Sponsor prior to cancellation
RELEASE: Subject to any applicable laws, by participating in the Competition, you agree to release Sponsor, promotional agencies, franchisees, and each of their respective parent companies, affiliates, subsidiaries, successors, assigns, agents, representatives, officers, directors, shareholders, and employees (collectively, “Released Parties”), from and against any and all liability for any claims, costs, injuries, losses or damages of any kind arising in connection with the Competition to the extent possible under applicable law. You agree that in any cause of action, the Released Parties’ liability shall, to the extent permitted by applicable law, be limited to any cost of entering and participating in the Competition and in no event shall the Released Parties be liable for attorneys’ fees or other legal costs.
You acknowledge that the Released Parties have neither made nor are in any manner responsible or liable, to the extent permitted by law, for any warranty, representation or guarantee, expressed or implied, in fact or in law, relative to a grant.
SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE LIMITATIONS OR EXCLUSION OF LIABILITY FOR INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, SO THE ABOVE MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU.
Each Participant hereby acknowledges and agrees that the relationship between themselves and the Sponsor is not a confidential, fiduciary, or other special relationship, and that the Participant’s decision to provide the Materials to Sponsor for purposes of the Competition does not place the Sponsor in a position that is any different from the position held by members of the general public with regard to elements of the Materials, other than as set forth in these Official Rules. Each Participant understands and acknowledges that the Sponsor has wide access to Materials, technology, designs, and other materials, and that new ideas are constantly being submitted to them or being developed by their own employees. Each Participant also acknowledges that many ideas may be competitive with, similar to, or identical to the Materials in theme, idea, format, or other respects. Each Participant acknowledges and agrees that such Participant will not be entitled to any compensation as a result of Sponsor’s use of any such similar or identical material that has or may come to Sponsor, or any of them, from other sources. Participants acknowledge that other Participants may have created ideas and concepts contained in their Material design that may have familiarities or similarities to their Material design, and that they will not be entitled to any compensation or right to negotiate with the Sponsors because of these familiarities or similarities. Participants also acknowledge that the Sponsors will not restrict work assignments or representatives who have had access to your Materials. By entering this Competition, Participants agree that use of information in Sponsor’s representatives’ unaided memories in the development or deployment of Sponsor’s products or services does not create liability for Sponsor under these Official Rules or copyright or trade secret law.
INTERPRETATION: These Official Rules will be interpreted according to its plain meaning without presuming that it should favor either party. Unless stated or context requires otherwise: (i) lists of examples following “e.g.”, “including”, “for example”, or the like are interpreted to include “without limitation,” unless qualified by words such as “only” or “solely”; (ii) except as otherwise specified, all monetary amounts are expressed and, if applicable, payable, in U.S. dollars; (iii) URLs are understood to also refer to successors, localizations, and information or resources linked from within websites at the specified URLs; (iv) a writing is signed; and (v) a party’s choices or determinations under these Official Rules are in its sole discretion. The section headings of these Official Rules are for convenience only and have no interpretive value.
ENTIRE AGREEMENT: These Official Rules are the parties’ entire agreement regarding the subject matter hereof and merges and supersedes all related agreements, oral understandings, representations, prior discussions, proposals, and letters of intent with respect to the subject matter of these Official Rules. Only authorized officers of Amazon may enter into agreements on its behalf and no other Personnel may bind Amazon. In particular, no shrink-wrap, click-wrap, click-through, click-accept, or other online terms or polices (“Supplier Additional Terms”) provided with any Products or Services hereunder shall be binding on Amazon, even if use of such Products or Services requires an affirmative “acceptance” of those Supplier Additional Terms before access or use is permitted. All such Supplier Additional Terms shall be of no force or effect and shall be deemed rejected by Amazon in their entirety. NEITHER PARTY WILL BE BOUND BY, AND EACH SPECIFICALLY OBJECTS TO, ANY PROVISION THAT IS DIFFERENT FROM OR IN ADDITION TO THESE OFFICIAL RULES (WHETHER PROFFERED VERBALLY OR IN ANY QUOTATION, INVOICE, SHIPPING DOCUMENT, ONLINE TERMS AND CONDITIONS EXCEPT FOR THOSE EXPRESSLY REFERENCED IN THIS AGREEMENT, ACCEPTANCE, CONFIRMATION, CORRESPONDENCE, PROPOSAL, OR OTHERWISE), UNLESS SUCH PROVISION IS SPECIFICALLY AGREED TO IN A WRITING SIGNED BY BOTH PARTIES.
SEVERABILITY: If a court finds part of these rules illegal, the rest will continue in force. Each of the paragraphs of these rules operates separately. If any court or relevant authority decides that any of them are unlawful, the remaining paragraphs will remain in full force in effect.
DISPUTES: To the extent permitted by law, this Competition is governed by the laws of the United States and the State of Washington, USA. As a condition of participating in this Competition, participants agree that any and all disputes which cannot be resolved between the parties, and causes of action arising out of or in connection with this Competition, shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action, exclusively before a court located in King County, Washington, USA having jurisdiction. Further, in any such dispute, under no circumstances will participants be permitted to obtain awards for, and hereby waive all rights to claim, punitive, incidental or consequential damages, including attorneys' fees, other than participant’s actual out-of-pocket expenses (e.g. costs associated with entering), and participant further waives all rights to have damages multiplied or increased. Participants agree that the decisions of Sponsor and the judges related to the Competition are final.
WINNER’S LIST: To obtain a list of the names of winners, email your request to, up to sixty (60) days after the close of the Competition, to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Amazon Physical Science Fellowship Competition WINNERS LIST”.
SURVIVAL: Terms related to termination rights, indemnification rights, limitations of liability, damages, confidentiality, licenses that expressly survive expiration or termination and perpetual licenses will survive the termination or expiration of this Agreement.