AES regularly holds juried competitions for three awards and a yearly thesis funding prize, all of which recognize outstanding work in the field.
History of the Book Awards
At the 1996 American Ethnological Society Spring Board Meeting, and on the suggestion of Akhil Gupta, the then AES Treasurer and now AAA Past President, AES initiated the AES Senior and Junior Book Awards. After both awards were granted in 1996 and 1997 and in light of the heavy workload entailed, AES began to offer the awards every other year. Sharon Stephens served on the jury of the first Senior Book Award in 1996; after her tragic death in 1998, the Junior Book Award was renamed in her honor.