Updated: Aug 4
The Chandler is a prestigious award in the Australian science fiction community, having been presented by the Australian Science Fiction Foundation (ASFF) almost every year since 1992. Its relaunch after thirty years , upon a new website with greater interactivity, sets a new standard as the countdown continues for the unveiling of the a new look and direction for the Foundation.
The Chandler Award features heavily on the new website, making it easier for people to nominate their favourite candidates in ways that ease the process and provide for a greater range of criteria and possible outcomes. Nominations for 2022 are now open and close on 1st September. Details and the nomination form can be found on the draft new website here and include options for conjoint or other nominations that represent innovative, creative and diverse fields of community involvement.
Due for official launch on 1st August, the new website represents a larger rebirth. Born out of the 1975 Aussiecon (Australia's first World Science Fiction Convention), the Australian Science Fiction Foundation was formally established back in 1976. Today, months of re-design and a redevelopment of ASFF policies are continuing. Current President of the Foundation, Juliette Cavendish, says that ‘the time has come for the Foundation to exist in a new digital era, and become Australia’s leading Science Fiction resource. We wanted to bring our science fiction fans together and offer a new era of connectivity, activities and vision. Our website will hopefully allow people to access world-class art and information in the comfort of their own home.'
Long-time SF fan Dick Jenssen has been a keen supporter in helping to relaunch the ASFF. He credits science fiction with stimulating his imagination and directing his path towards a scientific career which involved teaching, research, and the use of computers from the days of CSIRAC (the 1949 Australian electronic brain) to the mainframe computers of recent times. In short, this meant that his life and career was living a science fiction dream.
Vice President of the Foundation, Geoff Allshorn, looks forward to the ASFF relaunch: 'Science fiction is a genre that looks ahead, and during these opening years of the twenty-first century, it is refreshing and exciting to think of the possibilities that lie before us. The Foundation has a proud legacy of nearly half a century, and we should commemorate what has gone before, but this legacy should also give us the incentive to take the initiative in creating a new and improved future. After all, the future is not what it used to be.'