Finalists announced for 2024 consciousness research prize

June 2, 2024
IONS Science Team

IONS is thrilled to announce that three finalists have been chosen to draft a review of models of non-local consciousness for the 2024 award.

Non-local Consciousness Prize

The second annual Linda G. O’Bryant Noetic Sciences Research Prize aims to award three prizes for reviews comparing theories of non-local consciousness (NC). Non-local consciousness is defined as extending beyond the brain and body, potentially influencing the physical world at a distance.

The reviews should highlight theories that suggest consciousness is not constrained by the brain, space, time, or traditional senses, emphasizing those supported by empirical evidence. Philosophical implications and methods for testing these theories should also be included. The target audience for the reviews is the general public, meaning that they should be able to convey their messages in language understandable to the average person (and not in scientific jargon).

Individuals or teams were eligible for the award, provided they included at least one person experienced in conducting comprehensive scholarly or scientific reviews. 

The submission process consists of two phases. In Phase 1, interested applicants submitted a letter of intent and a CV. Phase 1 of the Linda G. O’Bryant Noetic Sciences Research Prize 2024 is now completed. We received 26 applications and are pleased to announce our three finalists below. All judging was blinded, but applicants were scored for the ability to successfully complete the review.

In Phase 2, the finalists were invited to submit reviews of at least 10,000 words, suitable for publication as a monograph or equivalent. Finalist reviews are due September 30, 2024, and the final winner will be announced on November 1, 2024. The final reviews will be judged based on six criteria.

Six Judging Criteria

First, they should be comprehensive, covering a broad range of modern and ancient theories relevant to NC phenomena. Second, they should exhibit critical analysis, rigorously examining the theories and any supporting empirical evidence. Third, the reviews should have a comparative scope, discussing similarities, differences, strengths, and weaknesses of the theories, classifying them by type and philosophical framework. Fourth, they should identify empirically testable predictions that could adjudicate between theories. Fifth, clarity and accessibility are crucial, with the reviews being understandable to the educated general public and including illustrations and references to open-access databases. Finally, originality will be valued, with the reviews potentially drawing groundbreaking conclusions, proposing new theories, or introducing innovative empirical investigation methods.

All finalists are guaranteed to win some of the $100,000 prize, with amounts determined by the IONS board advisors based on the quality and scope of the reviews. 

Team 1

Chris Roe is a distinguished researcher at the University of Northampton, specializing in the field of parapsychology. He holds a Ph.D. in psychology and has extensively studied the nature of consciousness, particularly focusing on non-local consciousness and paranormal phenomena. Roe is renowned for his empirical approach to exploring these areas, integrating rigorous scientific methods with an open-minded investigation of extraordinary human experiences. He has authored numerous publications and is a respected figure in the academic community for his contributions to understanding the broader dimensions of consciousness.


Michael Daw is a doctoral researcher in Chris Roe’s laboratory, focusing on the relationship between spirituality and psi phenomena. His work also explores the connections between vegetarianism, fasting, and spiritual experiences. Additionally, Michael is dedicated to addressing environmental crises by promoting carbon removal, rewilding, and veganism.



Team 2

Michael Nahm is a pioneering researcher dedicated to exploring the frontiers of biology. With a Ph.D. in biology, Nahm focuses on unconventional and groundbreaking areas within the biological sciences, including the study of anomalous phenomena and their implications for our understanding of life and consciousness. His work often intersects with parapsychology, examining phenomena that challenge traditional scientific paradigms. Nahm is known for his thorough and innovative research methods, contributing valuable insights and expanding the boundaries of contemporary biological science. He has published extensively and is highly regarded for his interdisciplinary approach and commitment to advancing knowledge in this emerging field.

Team 3

Dr. Cameron Alldredge is a psychologist currently studying at Baylor University, with a keen focus on consciousness studies. His research delves into the intricacies of human consciousness, exploring the nature of awareness, perception, and the cognitive processes underlying conscious experience. Dr. Alldredge is particularly interested in the intersections between consciousness and mental health, investigating how states of consciousness can influence psychological well-being. His work in this field is distinguished by numerous publications and presentations at professional conferences, contributing significantly to our understanding of the mind and its complexities.


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