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CAFE Outstanding Dissertation Award

The E. Lisa Panayotidis Dissertation Award in the Foundations of Education 

This award is made as a legacy of E. Lisa Panayotidis (1960-2016), who did so much to promote the Foundations of Education in Canada, in particular, the study of educational history.  The award honours a doctoral graduate whose dissertation improves educational processes in the study of educational foundations, or adds to the field’s body of knowledge through research or scholarly inquiry.


It is presented by the Canadian Association of Foundations of Education (CAFE) to the person who has submitted the best doctoral dissertation for which a degree has been granted in Canada during the calendar year prior to the annual CAFE conference. Authors must be members of CAFE at time of submission.


The dissertation must focus on an issue of relevance to the Foundations of Education in Canada. Broadly defined, this includes scholarship related to the study of History, Philosophy or Sociology of Education in the Canadian context. All research methodologies will be considered on an equal basis.

Eligibility Requirements: 

The dissertation must be completed and successfully defended between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2022.

Submission Procedures: 

The application, sent via e-mail to the chair of the awards committee, must include:


  1. A copy of the dissertation, in PDF format

  2. A letter of application from the candidate which includes a description of the dissertation not to exceed 120 words. The candidate is to include a separate cover sheet that includes the candidate’s contact information, including work and home address, telephone numbers, and email address.

  3. A substantive recommendation letter from the candidate’s faculty supervisor as a member of CAFE, outlining why this dissertation should be considered for the award, sent as an attachment by email from the email address of the academic institution. Supervisors may only support the nomination in CAFE of one dissertation per year.

Adjudication Criteria: 

Submitted works will be judged using the following criteria: significance to the field; contribution to the field; originality; and exceptional quality of the research discerned through clarity of purpose, organization, argument/presentation, and writing.



The full nomination package must be received by email (pdf dissertation; supervisor nomination letter; summary; and current contact information in Word or PDF format) no later than January 31, 2023 to: 



Dr. Sandra Kouritzin

Chair, CAFE Awards Committee

Include "CAFE Dissertation Award" in the subject line.


Once the nomination package has been received, the Chair of the Awards Committee will respond to the candidate and the candidate’s faculty supervisor confirming receipt. If you do not receive confirmation, please contact the Chair. Incomplete or late submissions will not be considered. All nominations will be kept confidential. The committee reserves the right not to issue the award in the absence of a nomination that meets the award criteria.


The award winner will receive:

  • Commemorative plaque.

  • $100 cash prize.

  • Designated place on the annual CAFE conference program to present the dissertation research.

  • Announcement of the award on the CAFE Website.

  • A hand-written letter of congratulations from Lisa’s husband, Paul Stortz, outlining the prestige of the award and what the namesake of the award stood for in her work and writing.

  • All nominees will receive a 1-year paid membership in CAFE (but regret this does not extend to include a CSSE membership).

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