Embassy Science Fellows Program

Date: 2016 Description: ESF Richard Hall of NOAH with colleagues at the Thailand Department of Fisheries - State Dept Image

The Embassy Science Fellows Program provides U.S. embassies access to the expertise of U.S. government officers in science and technology fields.

  • U.S. embassies request Fellows to assist on science, technology, environment or health issues. They recommend projects that will have significant positive impact on their host countries and our bilateral relationship as well as contribute to solving real problems.
  • The work of Embassy Science Fellows has contributed to policy development and collaboration with host governments, universities and other organizations.
  • The Program is active throughout the world, and in 2016 received 91 technical proposals from 66 U.S. missions in 40 countries.
  • Fifteen U.S. Government science agencies participate and, on average, the Embassy Science Fellow Program places 45 scientists per year.  Almost 450 Fellows have participated in the program since its inception in 2001.

The work of the program has included managing dry lands in Africa, developing regional drinking water systems in Latin America, researching climate change mitigation efforts in Europe and the Caribbean, and preparing for disaster response in East Asia.  Embassy Science Fellows grow a global network, where we collaborate across borders to solve the world’s most pressing challenges to create a more stable, peaceful and prosperous world.  

Examples of Recent Projects by Embassy Science Fellows

Working on Coastal Development Issues

An Embassy Science Fellow collaborated with the Republic of the Marshall Islands Environmental Protection Authority to expand capacity in surveying and mapping.  President Obama recently signed a drought disaster declaration for the Marshall Islands, which is considered among the most vulnerable regions in the world.  The Fellow’s work helped to ensure that environmental sustainability informs coastal development and it directly supported disaster risk resilience in the region.  

Inspiring the Next Generation of Scientists

An Embassy Science Fellow in Hong Kong focused on air quality issues, a major concern in the region.  The Fellow reinvigorated the dialogue with scientist counterparts on air quality and next-generation air monitoring, and engaged in outreach to the public and students.  Her visit was pivotal in advancing bilateral cooperation on air quality with the Hong Kong Government.