Nominating or Applying for Awards

Australian awards and honours are made available either by nomination or by application.

Each award or medal has particular eligibility requirements. There are a number of agencies with responsibility for administering awards in the Australian honours system, including:

Further information on the application or nomination process (including forms where these are applicable) and eligibility requirements for each award can be found by clicking on the relevant link.

Awards administered by The Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat in Canberra

The Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat is located at Government House in Canberra. Its role is to provide the support necessary for the Governor-General to carry out his/her responsibilities relating to the independent administration of the Australian honours system. The awards administered by The Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat are based either on nominations from the community, or via specific organisations:

Public nominations

The honours and awards that are based on nominations from the public either by an individual or community group are:

Organisation nominations

Honours and awards that are based on nominations from an eligible organisation are:

For further information about these awards contact the Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat or visit the Governor-General's website


Awards administered by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet

In addition to advising Portfolio Ministers on the operation of Australia's honours system, the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet administers the following awards:

Expired nominations

Honours and awards administered by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet that were based on nominations but are no longer available are:

  • Australian Sports Medal
  • Centenary Medal (this medal was awarded those Australian citizens born on or before 31 December 1901 and who lived to celebrate the centenary of federation on 1 January 2001).

For further information on these awards contact the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.


Awards administered by the Department of Defence

The Directorate of Honours and Awards at the Department of Defence is responsible for the administration of defence-related awards, including service and campaign medals, long service awards, and foreign medals awarded to Australians for service during the Vietnam conflict. 

Click on the awards below for more information on how the medals are awarded. 

Nomination-based awards:

Gallantry Decorations

Distinguished Service Decorations

Conspicuous Service Decorations

Other defence medals

Application based awards

Australian service and campaign medals are awarded to defence force and police personnel by their respective organisations for operational service. Application processes may be instituted for retrospective award of medals.

Long service awards for defence, police, other uniformed personnel and voluntary organisations involved in hazardous occupations, are awarded after a qualifying period of service. Application processes are handled internally by the relevant organisation.

Awards that are made to defence personnel on recommendation following a competition

Other Defence awards

Guidance on approval to accept and wear foreign awards offered to Australian Defence Force members during the Vietnam War by the following governments can be sought by contacting the Directorate of Honours and Awards, Department of Defence.

  • United States of America
  • Former government of South Vietnam
  • Former government of Cambodia

Honours and awards that were based on applications by the recipient or a recommendation on their behalf but are no longer available are:

For further information on defence-related awards contact the Directorate of Honours and Awards

There is more information on this website in the section about all the awards and medals in the Australian honours system, including details on how the medals are awarded. 

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