JOSA A Editor-in-Chief P. Scott Carney, Feature Editor Johannes Courtial, and members of the 2020 Emerging Researcher Best Paper Prize Committee announce the recipient of the 2020 prize for the best paper published by an emerging researcher in the Journal.

© 2021 Optical Society of America

We are pleased to announce the 2020 recipient of the JOSA A Emerging Researcher Best Paper Prize. The prize recognizes a student or early-career researcher (within five years of earning their highest degree) who is the first author of a paper that a committee of JOSA A editors and previous prize winners judged to be outstanding. The selection committee for the 2020 prize was chaired by Feature Editor Johannes Courtial and comprised topical editors David Fischer, Irina V. Larina, and Antigone Marino, representing a range of topics across the scope of the Journal, as well as former prize recipients Nokwazi Mphuthi (2018) and Sarah G. Rody (2019). Together, we were responsible for identifying a winner from among all the papers published in 2020 based on criteria including the scientific significance, quality, and presentation of the results.

The winning paper, “Demonstrating a multi-primary high dynamic range display system for vision experiments” [1], was written by Allie Hexley from the University of Oxford, UK, and her colleagues. The article describes a new display system for vision research. Providing simultaneous control over the stimulus’s spatiotemporal properties—luminance, contrast, and spectral content—the new system is a vision-research tool of unprecedented versatility. The paper is well presented and interesting, and the committee commends the authors for their attention to detail and clarity. We found our knowledge of vision research increased dramatically as we read that there are not just four types of photoreceptors in the eye (three classes of cones and rods), but also a fifth type: the intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells. In a very strong field where we learned something from each paper we reviewed, we judged the winning paper to be outstanding. Its value and impact have already been demonstrated by the impressive number of times it has been downloaded.

Allie C. Hexley


Allie C. Hexley is currently completing her D.Phil. in Experimental Psychology at the University of Oxford, UK, supported by a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network Fellowship as part of the RealVision consortium, under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program. She received her B.Sc. in Physics and Brain & Cognitive Sciences from MIT in 2017 and has combined her interests in physics and neuroscience in her current work on visual perception. Her work follows a multi-disciplinary approach, integrating methodology in psychophysics, genetics, retinal imaging, and simulation alongside the development of new display technologies and metrics, to enable novel investigations of human vision.

Please join us in congratulating Allie on her selection as the winner of the 2020 JOSA A Emerging Researcher Best Paper Prize!

P. Scott Carney
Editor-in-Chief, JOSA A
University of Rochester

Johannes Courtial
Feature Editor, JOSA A and
Chair, Best Paper Prize Committee
University of Glasgow

David Fischer
Topical Editor, JOSA A
NASA Glenn Research CenterIrina V. Larina
Topical Editor, JOSA A
Baylor College of Medicine

Antigone Marino
Topical Editor, JOSA A
Italian National Research Council

Nokwazi Mphuthi
2018 Prize Recipient
University of the Witwatersrand

Sarah G. Rody
2019 Prize Recipient
Chestnut Hill College


1. A. C. Hexley, A. Ö. Yöntem, M. Spitschan, H. E. Smithson, and R. Mantiuk, “Demonstrating a multi-primary high dynamic range display system for vision experiments,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 37, A271–A284 (2020). [CrossRef]  


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  1. A. C. Hexley, A. Ö. Yöntem, M. Spitschan, H. E. Smithson, and R. Mantiuk, “Demonstrating a multi-primary high dynamic range display system for vision experiments,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 37, A271–A284 (2020).

2020 (1)

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