Background

Launched in 2008, the Franklin Fellows Program (FFP) provided a mechanism for the Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to bring in fresh thinking and insights from the private and non-profit sectors into foreign policy development. The FFP recruited experts and consultants at the mid to senior level to help State and USAID advance important policies and programs. The Department was able to get the expertise it needed in a fast-changing international environment.

In 2021, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken launched the Modernization of American Diplomacy Initiative, which strives to advance American diplomacy by ensuring the Department of State’s work, resources, and priorities are aligned with a rapidly changing and increasingly complex world.  The modernization plan aims to build capacity on five core policy issues that have direct impact on Americans’ lives, livelihoods, and security: climate, global health, cyber security and emerging technologies, economics, and multilateral diplomacy.

The Partnership

Now, completely redesigned by the Department of State, the Franklin Talent Exchange Partnership (FTEP) program is a collaborative effort between the Department of State and private sector organizations to help advance diplomacy efforts on key policy issues. Organizations who join the FTEP partner consortium will have the opportunity to host Department of State employees within their organization for one year or send their employees to the Department of State to serve as a consultant for one year.

Becoming a part of the FTEP partner consortium is the ideal way to develop your employee’s skills, lend your organization’s expertise to the Department of State, and enhance your organization’s understanding of how foreign policy impacts U.S. businesses, their regions and communities, and national security.

The Opportunity

Those sent on assignment to the Department of State will gain firsthand insights into the world of foreign policy and development while contributing their specialized skills in areas of new and emerging concern where the Department lacks in-house expertise. Organizations who host Department of State personnel gain a valuable team member who understands the realm of foreign policy and government operations.

FTEP is not a definite 1:1 partnership exchange program. Your organization may be asked to host a Department of State employee or send your employee to the Department of State to serve as a consultant.

FTEP is not a path to employment at the Department of State. After their year at State, “sponsored” participants return to their private-sector organizations. FTEP is best utilized as a partnership development program for the private and public sector.

Who Qualifies

Organizations that have a U.S. office, including but not limited to corporations, non-government organizations, and startups/ business incubators.

If you or your organization are interested in the Franklin Talent Exchange Partnership or would like additional information, contact the Office of Global Partnerships (GP) at FTEP@state.gov 

U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future