For Immediate Release

Thursday, April 11, 2018

JAKARTA – The United States Government and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), in partnership with Underwriters Laboratories (UL), a global safety science company, has opened the fourth annual ASEAN-U.S. Science Prize for Women for applications.

This year’s prize seeks to recognize female scientists from the ASEAN region who are achieving excellence in the field of precision agriculture. The prize partners are looking for applicants who are working to expand opportunities for agricultural improvement across Southeast Asia. Applicants should be 40 years of age or younger, have a doctorate degree, and be a resident of an ASEAN member state.

As Southeast Asia’s population continues to grow rapidly, so does the demand on the region’s food system and farmers. Experts believe that by 2050, an estimated 40 percent more food will be needed to feed the region. These pressures are amplified by additional challenges to ASEAN’s food security, such as resource scarcity and extreme weather phenomena. Farmers are in need of new tools and technologies to create improved, efficient, low-cost and sustainable agricultural practices. The 2018 ASEAN-U.S. Science Prize for Women hopes to identify and reward those who are making agriculture more efficient across the region.

Top candidates will compete in a head-to-head pitch competition at an ASEAN Ministerial event hosted in the Philippines this October to determine the overall winner of the prize. The winner will receive $20,000 and an honorable mention will receive $5,000.  Applications will be accepted from now  until May 6, 2018 at http://ow.ly/2nW130jiADe.

“We are excited to recognize and reward talented women who are making great strides in their work, setting the bar high, and being role models for other women pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering and math,” said Chargé d’affaires Jane Bocklage at U.S. Mission to ASEAN.

“We must encourage scientists to continue their work towards technological solutions to address their community’s most pressing challenges. The Prize is a great way to empower promising female professionals to develop those solutions and celebrate females in STEM,” said Barbara Guthrie, UL Vice President Corporate Social Responsibility.

“With the recent advances in technology, precision agriculture is transforming farming. We are looking to recognise these talented women who found innovative ways to use technology to help farmers for the benefit of all residents of ASEAN region,” said Cheong Lee Sing, Head of Science and Technology Division, ASEAN Secretariat.

The ASEAN-U.S. Science Prize for Women is one of the many U.S. initiatives in support of ASEAN and its 10 Member States. The U.S. partners with ASEAN to support economic integration, expand maritime cooperation, cultivate emerging leaders, promote opportunity for women, and address transnational challenges. Through USAID’s cooperation with ASEAN, the U.S. addresses the root causes of poverty and instability and help lay the foundation for  prosperity and security.

For additional information, visit http://ow.ly/dcCc30jjg2v.