Staff and Contact Information

Matt Chessen, Acting Deputy Adviser
Daniel Moore, Senior Science and Technology Adviser
Scott A. Smith, Senior Technology Policy Adviser
Chelsea Kaser, Staff Assistant
Merin Rajadurai, Chief of Staff

Office of the Science and Technology Adviser

Room 3240, Department of State

2201 C Street NW
Washington, DC 20520
Tel: (202) 647-8725
Fax: (202) 647-5136

For general information or assistance, please e-mail us at:
E-mail: STAS-Mailbox@state.gov


Date: 01/28/2019 Description: Matt Chessen, Acting Deputy Adviser in the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State. - State Dept ImageMatt Chessen is a career U.S. diplomat, technologist and author who is currently serving as the acting Deputy Adviser in the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State. He leads the office and connects Department foreign policy priorities to research, development and discoveries emerging from the high-tech and private sectors. Matt also manages the development of policy portfolios for artificial intelligence and computational propaganda.

From 2016-2017, Matt was the State Department Science and Technology Policy Fellow at the George Washington University, where he researched the international implications of artificial intelligence, computational propaganda, and cognitive security. From 2014-2016, Matt was the Coordinator for International Cyber Policy for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs where he led the regional implementation of the US International Strategy for Cyberspace.

Before joining the Foreign Service in 2004, Matt founded an ecommerce company, and worked at Razorfish, managing the strategy development, design and implementation of large corporate websites. Matt served overseas as an Economic officer in Liberia, a Consular and Pol-Mil officer in Iraq, and as a POLAD to ISAF-HQ in Afghanistan. He also worked in Washington D.C. at the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs and at the Office of eDiplomacy, where he led the implementation of an open-source, crowd-working platform for the US government called Open Opportunities.

Matt holds a J.D. from Georgetown University, and an M.B.A. and B.A. from the University of Arizona. He has earned eight honor awards for his service at the Department of State, including Superior Honor Awards for his work on the Afghan Peace Process and his efforts advancing the US International Strategy for Cyberspace. Matt has written two novels, as well as numerous nonfiction articles and fictional short stories.


Date: 01/28/2019 Description: Daniel Moore, Senior Science and Technology Adviser in the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State. - State Dept ImageDr. Daniel Moore is a Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, IN. He is currently serving as a Senior Science and Technology Adviser in the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State and is a 2018-2019 IEEE Engineering and Diplomacy Fellow. Dr. Moore’s areas of expertise include engineering design, electronics, engineering educational methods, engineering ethics and international design projects. He is involved in undergraduate capstone design projects and international team-based projects, and is co-director of dual master’s degree program with the University of Applied Sciences in Ulm, Germany.

Professionally, he is associate editor of the Advances in Engineering Education online, peer-reviewed journal, and has been a program chair and steering committee chair for the Frontiers in Education Conference. Dan serves as the division chair for the American Society of Engineering Education’s Educational Research Materials division, and is an ABET program evaluator at national and international locations.

Dr. Moore was instrumental in the development of an upper level engineering course focused on ethical engineering design, professional responsibility and ethical behavior, as well as the importance of community involvement and service. The course incorporates contemporary issues, especially involving engineering design with ethical/unethical aspects. The topics usually result in spirited discussions in the classroom as well as generating many “hallway” follow-up discussions.

Dr. Moore has provided workshops, both nationally and internationally, on STEM focused accreditation and assessment processes, critical aspects, and benefits. He has also provided consultation services for engineering programs and schools on accreditation processes and guidance for their reports and material required for ABET accreditation.


Date: 01/28/2019 Description: Scott A. Smith, Senior Technology Policy Adviser in the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State. - State Dept ImageScott A. Smith currently serves as Senior Technology Policy Adviser, in the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State. Scott is a career Diplomat, Economist, and advocate for innovation, design, and systems thinking.

Scott has served in the U.S. Foreign Service for 34 years. Recently, Scott served as Mission Economist in the USAID Mission in Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2016-18; he advised the Department’s Senior Coordinator for Knowledge Management, 2015-16; he coordinated U.S. policy and lead delegations to APEC Telecommunications & Information Working Group and OECD Committee on Digital Economy Policy meetings, 2012-15; and was Chief of State’s Diplomatic Innovation and Knowledge Leadership Divisions, 2010-12. Prior to that, he served in postings to Japan, Singapore, Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon, and assignments to the APEC Secretariat and USTR.

Scott completed an advanced economics program at the Foreign Service Institute, where he also studied Japanese, Arabic and Turkish. His undergraduate studies were at Carleton College in Minnesota and Waseda University in Tokyo.


Date: 01/28/2019 Description: Chelsea Kaser, Staff Assistant for the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State. - State Dept ImageChelsea Kaser serves as the Staff Assistant for the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State through the Pathways Program. Chelsea manages the Science and Technology Policy Fellowship Program and leads the office in the development of a “data science for peace” policy portfolio. This portfolio surrounds the use of conflict data for prevention measures and early warning signaling.

Chelsea is also is a second year master’s student at the George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, where she is working towards an M.A. in Security Policy Studies. Before pursuing her masters, Chelsea graduated from Muhlenberg College with a B.A in International Affairs and minors in Russian Studies and History. Academically, her interests lie in subjects surrounding conflict resolution, peacebuilding and reconstruction, international peacekeeping efforts and conflict prevention practices. Through her studies, Chelsea is also engaged with transnational organized crime syndicates and insurgent networks in conflict zones.

Chelsea hopes to pursue a career with the U.S. Department of State or an international organization working on peacekeeping initiatives and providing analytical support in conflict zones.


Date: 01/28/2019 Description: Merin Rajadurai, Chief of Staff in the Office of Science & Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State. - State Dept ImageMerin Rajadurai is with the Office of Science & Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State since August 2018. Prior to this position, Rajadurai coordinated policy, operations, and crisis management for five Secretaries of State.

As Chairman of the Secretary of State Open (Innovation) Forum & Member of State Department Policy Planning, his primary portfolios were prosperity, scientific affairs, and multilateral engagement. Rajadurai advanced public-private partnerships, global business and investment strategy, and “All America Engagement” to build the nexus of government, industry, university, and civil society.

Rajadurai additionally held positions in Human Rights, U.S.-India Affairs, Consular Affairs, and a number of assignments on behalf of the White House.