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The Pervasive Role of Science, Technology, and Health in Foreign Policy: Imperatives for the Department of State
officers who know when and how to mobilize expertise in support of day-to-day policy-making and resolution of operational issues.
This report has emphasized the use of STH expertise in the formulation of foreign policy, or science for diplomacy. Of no less importance is the development of policies that will serve the interests of STH, or diplomacy for science. In reality, however, these two aspects of foreign policy are closely entwined. As the Department draws on STH expertise in developing policies, it identifies ways in which the STH community can launch programs in support of these policies, and as American specialists carry out international STH programs, they become prime sources of expertise as to how foreign policy can be configured to serve U.S. interests. For example, the contribution of STH exchanges as a stabilizing force in U.S. relations with the Soviet Union and as an opening wedge for relations with China brought together scientific and political objectives. The Green Revolution changed the economies and political orientation of many developing countries while advancing agricultural sciences on a broad front. STH cooperation is now an important part of the Middle East peace process, as both political leaders and scientists benefit from joint projects in the desert and along the coasts.
The recommendations set forth in this report take into account such major STH contributions to foreign policy in the past and provide a framework for even more impressive achievements in the future. They build on the current strengths of the Department, emphasizing that investments in developing additional STH competence throughout the Department will pay handsome rewards for U.S. foreign policy.