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Ian Hart Award
for Innovation in
Medical Education

Why this award

The Ian Hart Award for Innovation in Medical Education is made in memory of the late Ian Ritchie Hart, who was a leader in medical education with an international reputation. He made a significant contribution to advancing medical education in Canada, including founding the Canadian Association for Medical Education (CAME). He played a major role internationally in advancing approaches to the training of doctors.


Ian was responsible, along with Ronald Harden, for creating the Ottawa Conference, which had as its aim the provision of an international forum for exchanging ideas and developments in the field of evaluating clinical competence. The first conference was held in Ottawa in 1985 and the event has taken place biennially in locations around the world since that time.

In addition to a general commitment to advancing assessment, Ian had a particular interest in the development and application of the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE). He worked closely with AMEE and in 1999 he was instrumental in the creation of the Best Evidence Medical Education (BEME) Collaboration, which has developed into a key initiative in the promotion of evidence-based education in the healthcare professions with BEME International Collaborating Centres (BICCs) established around the world.


In Malaysia Ian played a major role in the establishment of the International Medical University, a forward-looking approach to medical education where students complete the first part of their training in Malaysia before transferring to one of a number of partner schools around the world where they complete their training.


In all of these initiatives and in his other work in medical education, Ian had a quiet authority and understated presence that led people with whom he was dealing to hold him in high respect. Ian travelled widely across the globe, and emphasised the importance of networking and sharing ideas and resources for the development of medical education worldwide.


might be nominated

The Award recognises individuals who have made an exceptional contribution to undergraduate, postgraduate and/or continuing medical education at a national, regional or international level.


The award winner will have demonstrated the creativity, diligence, agility and leadership necessary to significantly advance the field of medical education.


The individual will have demonstrated achievement through their contributions to curriculum planning, teaching and learning, assessment, education management or some other aspect of medical education. Particularly important is the ability to demonstrate sharing and communicating, which were major features of Ian’s work.

The Award & Proposed Timeframe

The Award has been made possible through the support of the Hart family and AMEE. Individuals working in the field of medical and health professions education may both nominate and be nominated. Self-nomination is also accepted.


One award is made biennially and is presented at the time of the Ottawa Conference. The awardee receives US$4,000 and free registration to the Ottawa Conference. He/she is also invited to make an oral presentation at the Conference.

Submissions close on Thursday 14th July 2023. The award recipient will be notified in early August. For details on how to submit see here.


Olle ten Cate


Professor of Medical Education, Utrecht University


Adjunct Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco


Adjunct Professor of Medicine, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences


Director of the Centre for Research and Development in Education at the University Medical Centre Utrecht (UMCU), The Netherlands

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