I recently received an offer for a research award for early-stage scholars producing outstanding research in my field. I have verified the award and the association are genuine and I have colleagues who have won the prize previously.
The problem is two-fold.
The first problem is that I don't think I deserve the award. Not wishing to blow things out of proportion, the award is good to have but won't make you famous. Yet, having looked at past winners, some of them are professors and all of them had a higher h-index than me when they were awarded. Comparing our research, I simply think there is no comparison, my research is not as good as past winner's - although I have an upcoming paper that may have some impact (colleagues seem to think so). Some of the past winners are my colleagues and co-authors.
The second problem is that the award seems to be won by nomination, typically by colleagues, who would have forwarded the nominee's website and CV. I don't want my colleagues to look stupid by declining the award, which would, of course, be a strange thing for most people to do.
I feel that I have been misjudged (too positively) and it just would not sit right to accept the award. On the other hand, I do not want to ask colleagues what to do since they have already been quite kind in accommodating my anxiety (I think), in general, and recently they have been quite generous in other regards.
Although the award is not a big deal my question is: will rejecting it harm my colleagues or me in some way?
Minor point: I would also have the option of giving a talk, I'd rather not, but I do have some work to talk about. Wondering if declining the offer to give a talk is a problem too.
Update: Thank you for those replies that answered the question. Kimball's ("awards are not about deserving"), xleitix's, and Dan Romik's (right to decline) answers were the most illuminating. It seems like I should accept. I think perhaps I was unclear since some are replying as if I come from a position of arrogance, my main motivation is to not embarrass myself or others.