Jefferson Science Fellows Program
The Jefferson Science Fellows program was developed by the former Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary Dr. George Atkinson to augment recent efforts to strengthen science and technology capacity and literacy in the Department of State. The program is supported by grants from the MacArthur Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation on a three-year pilot basis. Jefferson Science Fellows also receive financial support from participating American universities and has been endorsed by a broad range of professional societies and organizations.
The Jefferson Science Fellows program brings several experienced, tenured research-active scientists and engineers from the American academic community into the U.S. Department of State for one year. They are given assignments either in the Department headquarters in Washington, D.C., or at U.S. Missions abroad. Jefferson Science Fellows return to their academic careers following their Department of State assignments but remain available to the U.S. government as expert consultants for short-term projects over the following 5 years. Successful candidates are selected on the basis of their scientific achievements, articulation and communication skills, and their interest in science policy issues.
The role of the Jefferson Science Fellows is both to advise and educate. They use their professional experience to increase the understanding among policy officials of complex, cutting edge scientific issues and their possible impacts on U.S. foreign policy and international relations. By bridging the science and policy worlds, they are able to advise policy makers on available policy options to address solutions for emerging international scientific issues. The Jefferson Science Fellows Program is intended to make such cutting edge technical expertise accessible to top policy makers in the Department of State.
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