The Difference Between The Juran Medal And Deming Prize

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There are two prestigious awards presented for Quality Performance in the United States.

  1. The Juran Medal
  2. The Deming Prize

I have had the honor of being involved with both of them as a member of the Juran Global executive staff and award committee. I have also participated as a member of the internal consulting staff of a Deming Prize winner, Florida Power & Light.

The key differences between these two awards are very clear and distinct. They reflect the philosophies of the two gurus that they were named after.

The Juran Medal
Dr. Juran’s teachings and interactions were primarily focused on Leadership. He spent the greater part of his time, before and after he establishing the Juran Institute in 1979, writing books on Leadership’s role. A few of them are:

  • 1957 – Industrial Diagnostics; A Systematic Approach to Management Problem-Solving
  • 1964 – Managerial Breakthrough
  • 1977 – That Uninterested Top Management
  • 1989 – Juran on Quality Leadership – An Executive Handbook

Juran Books
Juran MedalThe Juran Medal is presented to an “individual,” a Leader (Chief Executive Officer) of an organization that has made significant breakthroughs in quality and has shown a personal commitment to quality.

The American Society for Quality defines The Juran Medal as: The Juran Medal is presented to the individual who exhibits distinguished performance in a sustained role as an organizational leader: personally practicing the key principles of quality and demonstrating breakthrough management.

The Deming Prize
Dr. Edwards W. Deming was a statistician and management consultant whose primary focus was on quality and the application of statistical methods of analysis. He is famous for his problem-solving cycle of Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA). The Deming Prize is awarded by the Japanese Union of Scientists and Engineers (JUSE). It is awarded to an “organization” that has exhibited exemplary levels of statistical quality control and the application of statistical analysis to demonstrate improvement, at all levels of the organization. JUSE conducts an audit of the organization that includes staff as well as manufacturing or service delivery functions.

Deming PrizeJUSE defines the Deming Prize as: The Deming Prize is given to organizations that have exerted an immeasurable influence directly and indirectly on the development of quality control/management. These organizations sought after new approaches to quality management that met the needs of their business environment. They have developed effective quality management methods, established the structures for implementation and put the methods into practice.

In summary; both of these are very prestigious awards. As described above they have very different points of focus, one for individual achievement and the other for organizational achievement. Nevertheless, they are both firmly based in the achievement of quality results and the application of fundamental yet sound principles of Planning, Improvement and Control.


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