ASEAN-U.S Science and Technology (S&T) Fellows and their supervisors from eight Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) convened at the ASEAN Foundation in Jakarta today to celebrate the successes from their Fellowship over the last year. Under the third annual cohort of the S&T Fellowship, these early-career scientists were selected through a highly competitive process among over 130 applicants from across the region to contribute their skills and experience to support and influence policy making across one of three focal areas: science, technology and innovation (STI) policy, climate variability, and sustainable energy.
Managed by USAID’s ASEAN-U.S. Partnership for Good Governance, Equitable and Sustainable Development and Security (PROGRESS) in collaboration with ASEAN’s Committee on Science & Technology (COST), the program launched as a pilot in 2014. Thirty-five Fellows from a total of eight ASEAN Member States have completed the fellowship to date. “More than just consistently growing in numbers of participants, the program is maturing in ways that are central to the implementation of the ASEAN Plan of Action on Science, Technology and Innovation,” said Dr. Tung Ciny, ASEAN COST Chair. “Pro-active Fellows have begun working together promote regional cooperation in applied science, which contributes to our vision for science, technology and innovation-enabled ASEAN.”
The program has been a collaboration between the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the U.S. Mission to ASEAN, and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) since 2014. “The primary aim of the Fellowship is to support the use of the best available science to policy-making,” said Ambassador Dan Shields, Chargé d’Affaires, United States Mission to ASEAN. “This type of Fellowship has been an excellent program in the United States since 1973 and now boasts a network of over 2,600 scientists. We are pleased to collaborate with ASEAN to do something similar.”
Based upon the recognized impact of the S&T Fellowship in its first three years, the ASEAN COST determined to continue the program in collaboration with the ASEAN Foundation. “The ASEAN Foundation is committed to developing human capacity in science, technology and innovation, said Elaine Tan, Executive Director. “We are pleased to launch the continuation of this program as the “ASEAN S&T Fellowship” later this year.”