NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL
September 11, 1998
The Honorable Madeleine K. Albright
Dear Madam Secretary:
I appreciate the opportunity to respond
to your request for a study of the contributions that science,
technology, and health (STH) can make to foreign policy, and how
the Department might better carry out its responsibilities to
that end. With this letter, I enclose the preliminary report
that the Department has requested on this important issue.
The opportunities that the areas of
science, technology, and health offer in foreign policy are dramatic.
As the world leader in most STH areas, the US can build on hundreds
of thousands of professional relationships that connect us to
the scientific communities in other nations. By forming partnerships
with foreign scientists, we enhance their status and support their
values, which can do a great deal to promote democracy. In addition,
spreading access to new scientific and technical advances is of
course essential for providing a decent life and an acceptable
environment for the world's expanding population, thereby reducing
the potential for destabilizing violent conflicts.
The tasks of understanding and responding
to the STH dimensions of foreign policy are daunting. Many officers
in political, economic, administrative, and consular positions
in Washington and abroadas well as those with explicit STH responsibilitiesmust
be able to recognize the STH dimensions of foreign affairs. This
preliminary report is designed to provide advice on how the Department
might best strengthen both its internal STH personnel resources
and its utilization of external expertise in pursuing important
US security, economic, and scientific goals.
In outline, the suggestions in the
report are as follows:
Providing Leadership within the
Department on STH-related Issues
The Secretary of State should provide continuing leadership for adequate consideration within the Department of the STH aspects of issues and should designate one of the undersecretaries to take the lead in ensuring that STH concerns are considered, when appropriate, during meetings and consultations involving the Secretary's Senior Advisors. This responsibility will require a staff of 2-3 positions that should be located in the office of the designated undersecretary.
The Department needs several additional clusters of strong STH competence, and it should provide personnel resources for sustained, operational attention to STH content in foreign policy issues.
The Department should incorporate the STH elements of foreign policy issues and their implications more fully into the Department's strategic planning process.
Secretary should articulate and disseminate throughout the Department
a policy that calls for greater attention to STH elements of issues
in the conduct of foreign affairs and provides guidance as to
sources of STH expertise available to both Embassies and Department
Strengthening the Available Base
of STH Expertise
The Department should provide expanded training opportunities for Department officials from the entry level to senior levels for developing and strengthening STH-related competencies.
Attractive career incentives are needed for FSOs to actively seek assignments involving STH-related issues at both senior and junior levels.
The Department should enhance the technical stature and capabilities of US Embassies in countries where STH developments are of special importance through assignment of technically trained personnel to Science Counselor and other full-time science positions.
The Department should systematize the exchange of personnel with STH skills with other US agencies that have strong capabilities in STH.
Department should expand its pool of external experts and actively
engage them in advising the Department's leadership on emerging
Some of the Committee's interim recommendations
could be put in place with little or no cost, while some involve
the assignment or establishment of up to about twelve positions
to STH purposes. Creating the most ambitious advisory mechanism
that the Committee has so far considered might involve the expenditure
of $500,000 annually. These seem modest investments given the
In addition to providing a broad vision
for the role of STH in foreign policy, the further work of this
committee will explore in more detail three sets of issues: general
personnel policies and practices; the clusters of STH expertise
in the foreign affairs agencies; and the STH-related international
activities of other departments and agencies.
In order to best meet your needs, I
would like to meet with you to receive your guidance concerning
the most important aspects of these or other issues that we should
address in the next phase of this study. You may also wish to
identify a specific current foreign policy issue with major STH
components where advice is needed. We would be pleased to assemble
a small group of experts to explore -- with yourself, the committee,
and appropriate State officers -- both the issue and the role
of STH advice in dealing with it.
I look forward to continuing the interactions
with you and your colleagues as the committee prepares more detailed
recommendations and the supporting documentation for your consideration.
HEALTH EXPERTISE IN US FOREIGN POLICY
(A Preliminary Report)
In June 1998, in response to a request from the Department of
State, the National Research Council (NRC) established a committee
to address two related issues: (1) "the contributions that
science, technology, and health (STH) can make to foreign policy,"
and (2) "how the Department might better carry out its responsibilities
to that end, within resource constraints" (attachments 1
and 2). In this interim report, the committee has decided to
focus its preliminary suggestions on one aspect of the second
issue: immediate and practical steps that the Department might
take to strengthen its personnel resources in STH areas and to
enhance its capability to draw on sources of STH expertise outside
the Department in formulating foreign policy. The committee plans
to address other aspects of its charge in its final report; that
report will contain a much fuller consideration of the many important
contributions that STH can make to foreign policy and an assessment
of how the Department can effectively facilitate STH progress
through foreign policy actions and the development and implementation
of international STH programs. The Committee will also elaborate
on the preliminary suggestions that are set forth below.
Contributions of STH Advice to Foreign Policy
The scientific and technical capability of many nations is in
a state of fluxthreatened in some, growing strongly in others,
evolving in still others. In almost all countries, the international
aspects of STH interests are increasing in importance; and STH
challenges are now at the core of many foreign policy efforts
to advance the security, economic, and scientific goals of the
United States and to promote sustainable development on a broad
Issues with significant STH dimensions that currently are high
on the US foreign policy agenda include:
Arms control and nonproliferation challenges
Globalization of industrial activities and interests
Expanded international transportation and communication linkages
Emergence and spread of infectious diseases and other health threats
Transnational environmental threats
Protection of intellectual property rights of computer software, pharmaceuticals, and other technology-based products
Narco-trafficking and international terrorism
There are many other areas of broad interest wherein STH capabilities can play a constructive role in achieving US foreign policy goals. For example, STH programs often contribute to regional cooperation and understanding in areas of political instability. Of critical importance to the evolution of democratic societies are freedom of association and inquiry, objectivity, and opennesstraits that characterize the scientific process. Technologies offer new and exciting prospects to improve educational opportunities in many countries, and medical advances can contribute to reducing child mortality in dramatic ways. These and other topics will be considered in more detail during the committee's future deliberations.1
STH capabilities are among the greatest strengths of the United
States. The research and development prowess of the nation's
universities, government laboratories, and industry and its system
for training future scientists, engineers, health professionals,
and executive leaders are admired by industrialized and developing
nations alike. At the same time, effective utilization of these
capabilities in the formulation and implementation of foreign
policy has long been of concern within and outside the Department.
The Department, other government agencies, the US Congress, and
nongovernmental organizations have initiated many assessments
of attendant opportunities and problems for more than fifty years
(attachment 3). During this period, the Department has undertaken
a number of steps in addressing STH-related issues, with mixed
results. The committee has been able to draw on those past efforts
to complement the extensive background experience of its members
in developing its recommendations.
Resolution of many foreign policy issues has hinged on sound scientific
assessments. Examples of such issues at multilateral forums include
negotiation of the comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty and related
arrangements, development of international agreements to limit
discharges of ozone-depleting chemicals and to protect biodiversity,
allocation of radio frequencies for a multitude of uses, determination
of appropriate international food safety standards, and agreements
to protect the Arctic and Antarctic regions. Similarly, in bilateral
relationships, scientific judgments are often central to reaching
satisfactory arrangements. Acrimonious debates over acid rain
were for many years a critical aspect of US-Canadian relations.
Convincing Argentina of the benefits of peaceful scientific cooperation
was very important in preventing efforts to proceed with a nuclear
weapons program. In Peru, drug eradication and crop substitution
efforts depend on sound assessments of agricultural processes.
And South Korea's industrial growth has been fueled by American
advice over several decades as to how science and technology can
lead to profitable exports.
STH Capabilities of the Department of State
At its initial meetings, the committee met with a large number
of senior Department officials and with other government officials
and nongovernmental specialists. In addition, NRC staff consulted
with many other officials of the Department and other agencies
(attachment 4). In these meetings and consultations, a clear
theme emerged: STH-rich issues permeate the agendas of many offices
of the Department and of most US ambassadors.
Specialized offices within the Department have important capabilities
in some areas of STH (e.g. nuclear nonproliferation, telecommunications,
fisheries). However, the Department has limited technical capabilities
in a number of other areas.
For example, the Department cannot effectively participate
in some interagency technical decisions concerning important export
control issues; participation is essential in resolving conflicting
interagency views on issues such as sales of satellite technology
to China and supercomputers to Russia. The Department has little
appreciation of the existence, significance, and implications
of many of the hundreds of collaborative arrangements between
the Department of Defense and researchers in the former Soviet
Union and other important countries. The Department has not addressed
the international dimensions of alternative US energy policies
that must take into account a variety of technologies being developed
throughout the world. Nor does it have the expertise to pursue
an active policy that builds on collaborative opportunities in
the fields of international health and agriculture in addressing
biological and chemical weapons terrorism. In addition, only
because of last minute intervention of the scientific community
did the Department recognize the importance of access by researchers
to data bases that were the subject of draft legislation and international
negotiations with regard to intellectual property rights.
Recent trends strongly suggest that other important STH-related
issues are not receiving adequate attention within the Department.
The position of Assistant Secretary for Oceans and International
Environmental and Scientific Affairs (OES) has been vacant for
many months. OES has shifted most of its science-related resources
to address international environmental concerns with reduced capability
to address the 35 active bilateral science and technology agreements,
let alone the opportunities for new bilateral STH relationships
and the challenges posed by the rapid globalization of many aspects
of science and technology. The positions of Science and Technology
Counselors have been downgraded at important US embassies, including
embassies in New Delhi, Paris, and London. The remaining full-time
science, technology, and environment positions at embassies are
increasingly filled by FSOs with very limited or no experience
in technical fields. Thus, it is not surprising that several
US technical agencies which the committee consulted have reported
a decline in the support they now receive from the embassies;
the committee plans to consult further with the agencies on this
critical concern. Also, the Department has sent a strong negative
signal as to the importance of STH-related issues throughout the
Foreign Service by eliminating the personnel cone for science
and technology without offering alternative career-enhancing opportunities
for FSOs with experience and interests in STH developments.
There are encouraging signs that senior official of the Department
are attempting to reverse such trends and bring STH considerations
more fully into the foreign policy process.. As examples of the
Department's recent efforts to respond to STH-related challenges
and opportunities, the leadership of the Department noted the
extensive attention that they are giving to a number of highly
important global issues such as climate change, proliferation
of weapons of mass destruction, and health aspects of refugee
migration. They pointed out that STH initiatives have helped promote
regional policy objectives: for example, scientific cooperation
in addressing water and environmental problems that contributes
to the Middle East peace process. Also, they stressed that collaborative
STH projects often support broad bilateral political and economic
agendas (e.g. current Vice President-level forums with Russia,
Ukraine, Egypt, South Africa, and China; earlier scientific cooperation
with India; and the long-standing US-Japan Common Agenda). At
the same time, they readily acknowledge that overall the Department
is not well equipped to assess effectively the STH aspects of
While emphasizing that the Department is prepared to take steps
to address this shortcoming, the Department's leadership underscored
the resource constraints within the Department due to a substantial
reduction of the overall foreign affairs budget during the past
five years. Also, they pointed to the increased competition for
available funds resulting, for example, from the establishment
of new embassies in the former Soviet Union and from demands for
strengthened security measures at embassies in a number of countries.
Thus, they caution that expectations of major diversions of existing
funds to new initiatives are unrealistic.
Compelling as these arguments are, it may not be possible to reduce
the major STH-related problems without reprogramming some existing
resources or obtaining at least limited amounts of new resources.
Of course the Congress plays a critical role in the budget process,
and the committee plans to obtain additional insights into Congressional
views that are relevant to STH concerns.
Preliminary Conclusions and Suggestions
To deal effectively with complex technical issues such as those
identified above, the Department needs to have internal resources
to integrate STH aspects into the formulation and conduct of foreign
policy and a strong capability to draw on outside resources.
There is no shortage of technical advice that could be mobilized
by the Department. A major need is to ensure that there are receptors
in dozens of offices throughout the Department capable of identifying
valid sources of relevant advice and of absorbing such advice.
This is a daunting task. Some senior Department officials have
stated that the current recognition within the Foreign Service
of the importance of STH aspects of foreign policy is at a low
level, perhaps comparable to the level of acceptance of the field
of economics as a central aspect of foreign policy about 15 years
ago. However, there is a difference. Whereas recognition of
the importance of economics has been steadily growing in recent
years, recognition of the importance of STH developments as a
core foreign policy concern comes and goes. Any further delay
in giving adequate attention to the significance of the STH aspects
of foreign affairs will be seriously detrimental in view of the
speed and pervasiveness with which technologies are affecting
international relations throughout the world.
Of key importance, the sources of advice on STH-related issues
must be knowledgeable about both world-wide STH developments and
foreign affairs and must be able to relate STH factors to policy
issues faced by the Department. That, too, is a daunting task.
As has been demonstrated in the field of arms control, the goal
can be best achieved through a continuing process of interaction
between the members of the STH communities and the relevant offices
of the Department. Such interactions should take advantage of
contacts between American scientists and engineers and their foreign
The committee's immediate suggestions are few, but critical.
They provide initial steps in a significant shift in the Department's
handling of the STH-dimensions of foreign policy. They fall into
two groups as follows:
Providing Leadership within the Department on STH-Related
Strengthening the Department's ability to deal with STH-related
issues will require leadership at the highest levels of the Department.
There are several steps that should be taken.
1. The Secretary should provide continuing leadership for
adequate consideration within the Department of the STH aspects
of issues and should designate one of the undersecretaries to
take the lead in ensuring that STH concerns are considered when
appropriate during meetings and consultations involving the Secretary's
Senior Advisors. This responsibility will require a staff of
2-3 positions that should be located in the office of the designated
undersecretary. Many Department offices are involved in STH-related
issues. There is occasional uncertainty as to responsibilities
for newly emerging issues, and many issues involving STH cut across
organizational lines. Thus, the five undersecretaries and the
Counselor of the Department constitute an appropriate forum where
issues identified by the Secretary, the undersecretaries, or the
staff as needing attention are considered. Such high-level attention
should stimulate steps throughout the Department to improve capabilities
and incentives to deal with the STH aspects of issues.2
2. In addition, the Department needs several clusters of strong
STH competence, and it should provide personnel resources for
sustained, operational attention to STH content in foreign policy
issues. Although the committee has not examined the activities
of the entire Department, there are clear needs for clusters of
STH expertise within several bureaus and offices, including the
Bureau of Political-Military Affairs (PM), the Bureau of Economic
and Business Affairs (EB), the Bureau of Oceans and International
Environmental and Scientific Affairs (OES), the Policy Planning
Staff (S/P), and the Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR).
The size and responsibilities of these clusters (e.g. liaison,
analysis, negotiations) will vary significantly.
An increase in the OES staff, which now has 130 positions, of
about six new positions devoted to international health issues,
scientific cooperation, and globalization of advanced technologies
is certainly warranted. Also, a single officer with experience
in STH issues assigned to S/P, which has about 15 analysts and
direct linkages to the leadership of the Department, would enhance
capabilities to address issues that should command high-level
attention.3 A group of two or three STH-oriented analysts within
INR, which has more than 125 analysts and close connections to
the intelligence community and to external advisory sources, could
also enhance the Department's planning and analysis capabilities
in a significant fashion.4 The Department should to the extent
possible make the needed adjustments within available resources.
Also, if necessary, the Department should seek new resources
for this purpose, recognizing that an initial internal commitment
of resources is an important step to support resource advocacy
discussions with the Office of Management and Budget and the Congress.
3. The Department should incorporate the STH elements of foreign
policy issues and their implications more fully into the Department's
strategic planning process. The first government-wide
United States Strategic Plan for International Affairs is
a step forward in bringing together the diverse interests of many
government agencies into a coherent set of foreign policy objectives
and in relating the allocation of budgetary resources to these
objectives. More explicit incorporation of the STH elements into
the Strategic Plan would both highlight the issues for
Department and Embassy officers and would allow the planning process
to address related resource implications more completely. The
documents prepared in connection with the Summit of the Americas
are excellent examples of the opportunities for incorporating
STH considerations into such a process. The Department should
work with the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and
other federal agencies in reviewing the STH aspects of the Strategic
Plan in anticipation of its next revision. Appendix 5 presents
the committee's initial review of the opportunities for more explicitly
including STH factors in the Strategic Plan.
4. The Secretary should articulate and disseminate throughout
the Department a policy that calls for greater attention to STH
elements of issues in the conduct of foreign policy and provides
guidance as to sources of STH expertise available to both Embassies
and Department offices. A policy statement by the Secretary
is an essential step in heightening awareness of the importance
of STH elements in the formulation and conduct of foreign policy
and in encouraging officers to devote sustained attention to these
issues. In 1996, the previous Secretary issued a Memorandum on
Integrating Environmental Issues into the Department's Core
Foreign Policy that triggered actions throughout the Department.
A comparable, although more far-reaching, STH statement is warranted.
However, the statement will have little lasting value unless
coupled with other actions such as those recommended herein.
Strengthening the Available Base of STH Expertise
Given the pervasiveness of issues involving STH developments
within the foreign policy agenda and the continuing advances in
STH throughout the world, a broadly based systemic approach to
upgrading and maintaining relevant skill levels of many Department
officers is essential. The Department's efforts should provide
both incentives and opportunities for FSOs, civil servants, and
specialists on temporary assignments to the Department to develop
competencies needed for effectively relating STH developments
to foreign policy. Also, the Department should have adequate
mechanisms in place for drawing, as needed, on outside experts
to provide insights and advice on STH issues in a form that can
be easily understood and used within the Department. The following
steps would be useful in this regard:
5. The Department should provide expanded training
opportunities for Department officials from the entry level to
senior levels for developing and strengthening STH-related competencies.
All FSOs should become increasingly familiar with the interactions
between advances in STH and political, economic, and social developments
in different regions. The initial orientation training for incoming
FSOs should include an introduction to the ways that STH are influencing
governments and shaping world affairs. Such an early orientation
for incoming FSOs would be an important first step toward building
an STH-sensitive culture in the foreign service. Taking time
off from operational assignments for formal training in STH-related
areas at the Foreign Service Institute (FSI) later in a career
should be viewed by both the Department and FSOs as career-enhancing
and appropriate incentives should be established. The STH-related
courses offered by FSI have very useful content but should be
expanded to provide more intensive training for larger numbers
of FSOs and other Department officers as appropriate. FSI should
also provide STH-related continuing education opportunities for
interested employees in Washington and abroad through electronic
systems. In addition, the Department should consider training
opportunities at US universities which have developed relevant
programs for executives involved with STH-related activities.
Finally, with regard to STH specialists on lateral entry into
the Department, FSI might develop a general foreign policy orientation
6. Attractive career incentives are needed for FSOs to actively
seek assignments involving STH-related issues at senior and junior
levels. The recent abolition of the career cone for science,
technology, and environmental specialists has been interpreted
by some FSOs to signal that specializing in these areas is no
longer a desirable career option. They doubt that even a single
STH-related assignment would be advisable as preparation for future
mainstream assignments. Consequently, the most promising FSOs
with multiple assignment options will be hesitant to accept STH-related
assignments. The committee will consider in the future whether
concentrating a few FSOs in a specialized personnel cone is an
appropriate approach, given the need for a large number of FSOs
to have STH competencies. In any event, the current efforts of
the Department to provide some recognition in the promotion and
assignment processes to interests and achievements in technical
fields is an important step, in view of the increasing need for
such expertise on a world-wide basis; and special STH expertise
achieved through education, training, and/or experience should
be clearly highlighted in the personnel records that are used
in connection with assignments. Also, the Department's award
for excellence in reporting on STH developments is important.
The views of the American Foreign Service Association concerning
FSO specialization within the Foreign Service are of considerable
interest, and the committee will explore these views during its
future deliberations that will address many relevant aspects of
the FSO personnel system.
Building on the experience of the regional bureaus in providing
advocacy and support for geographic area specialists, the Department
should establish a focal point to provide support and mentoring
for FSOs with interests and capabilities in STH activities. This
focal point should provide assistance in identifying STH-related
assignment opportunities throughout the Department and possibilities
for detailing FSOs to other government agencies with STH interests.
Also it should assist FSOs serving in STH-related positions in
finding future career-enhancing assignments in other fields. Senior
Department officials, and particularly senior FSOs, must be personally
engaged in this effort if it is to be taken seriously by both
the personnel officers of the Department and by the FSOs themselves.
7. The Department should enhance the technical stature and
capabilities of US Embassies in countries where STH developments
are of special importance through assignment of technically trained
personnel to Science Counselor and other full-time science positions.
STH concerns (such as nuclear policy, export control, technological
competition, infectious diseases) are important elements of US
foreign policy in a number of critical countries. Embassies in
these countries would benefit considerably from sound analyses
by Embassy staff reflecting understanding of STH developments,
particularly on local aspects of global issues. Related professional
interactions of the Embassies with STH leaders of host countries
are also increasingly important, particularly in regard to techno-economic
reporting. Further, the coordination of programs of US technical
agencies is increasing in complexity. In some US Embassies, such
as Embassy Tokyo, the Science Counselors have served as coordinators
of the activities of overseas representatives of technical agencies,
and this pattern of coordination should continue. However, as
FSOs with limited STH experience fill the Science Counselor and
other full-time science positions, their leadership roles in coordination
efforts become more difficult. Further, the willingness of technical
agencies to agree to meaningful coordination is linked to the
STH experience of the coordinator.
8. The Department should systematize the exchange of personnel
with STH skills with other US agencies that have strong capabilities
in STH. For many years, the Department has relied on detailed
personnel from other agencies to fill highly specialized positions
in Washington on a short-term basis. Also, the technical agencies
have been important recruiting grounds for filling Science Counselor
positions. The Department appears to be reducing its reliance
on detailed personnel with STH skills whereas the need for sustained
interactions between the Department and many agencies with expanding
international activities is increasing. Thus, the Department
should encourage selected agencies, such as NSF, DOD, HHS (particularly
CDC and NIH), DOE, USDA, NASA, EPA, Interior, Commerce, and Transportation,
to identify appropriate specialists who would be available for
rotation through STH-related assignments in the Department and
overseas, including Science Counselor positions. The leadership
of the Department must participate in efforts to arrange for regular
two-way exchanges. They should encourage the agencies to share
the costs of supporting detailed personnel working within the
Department where they would have new opportunities to place individual
agency interests in a broader national perspective. Both the
Department and the cooperating agencies should consider exchange
assignments as career-enhancing. The committee will explore whether
in the long run a system of "rotators" from the private
sector, analogous to the approach of the National Science Foundation,
might also be appropriate.
9. The Department should expand the pool of external experts
and actively engage them in advising the Department's leadership
on emerging STH-related issues. There are many mechanisms
for mobilizing STH expertise that have been used by US government
agencies. Three of these mechanisms, in increasing order of cost,
that should be considered by the Department are as follows:
A roster of experts in a variety of STH fields with strong linkages to well-informed colleagues in the United States and abroad could be established with the experts granted security clearances as consultants to the Department, to be called upon individually or in small groups as necessary. Designated offices of the Department would be responsible for keeping the experts current on developments within the Department and other agencies so that when called upon, they would be able to address issues without a lengthy educational process and present their suggestions in a form usable by the Department.
A US scientific organization could be tasked to mobilize expertise on selected subjects as needed, and specialists from both the private and public sectors could participate. Of course the need for quality, credibility, and balance of interests of the participants should be paramount in establishing such an advisory mechanism. Also, the Department must ensure that studies that are undertaken address issues that would be of interest to officials within the Department; without a receptive audience, the results would be of little use.
A formal advisory committee could be established, perhaps modeled on the Defense Science Board (DSB). While it should formally report to the Secretary, its interactions with the Secretary's Senior Advisors would be the key to a useful activity. The committee would be on a smaller scale than the DSB. The DSB has been an important source of advice for the Department of Defense (DOD) because of the strong emphasis on continuous involvement of committee members in addressing important areas of interest to DOD. There has been specificity in the choices of topics to be considered in depth and serious involvement by senior DOD officials in the committee's deliberations. A DSB-like committee could provide important inputs to the Department of State in developing STH-related policies and strategies. The cost of such an activity, in addition to the time commitments of senior officials and other government participants, would be significant. For example, $500,000 plus staff costs incurred by the Department's participants would support (a) a two-week summer study to address many aspects of a broad field of emerging interest such as biotechnology or the security dimensions of international development, and (b) several meetings of an expert panel to prepare an in-depth assessment of a topic of priority concern such as the impact of the Internet on foreign policy or the prospects for and implications of oil wells in ever deeper ocean water. At the same time, the committee could serve not only as a source of advice but also as a planning mechanism for the Department and as a training ground for FSOs who would participate in the activities.
Resource Implications and The Future Agenda
The foregoing recommendations are intended to provide a portion
of an interim framework for elevating consideration of STH-related
issues within the Department. They underscore that STH-related
issues are pervasive and cannot be dealt with by any single office,
or indeed by a limited set of offices. Further, they emphasize
that the Department will only be able to use the vast pool of
STH talent within Washington and throughout the country to the
extent that it has an internal capacity and the incentive to draw
effectively on external sources of expertise.
At the same time the personnel implications of about a dozen new
positions and other costs of up to $500,000 per year seem modest
given the stakes involved. Should the list of STH-related requirements
expand as the committee considers in greater detail the strengths
and weaknesses of the Department, the committee will of course
give greater attention to priorities among its recommendations.
Building on the initial recommendations, the committee will consider
in its future deliberations steps that will help to institutionalize
approaches to integrating STH concerns and opportunities into
the foreign policy process even if future leaders of the Department
have less of a personal interest in this topic than the current
NRC Committee on the Science, Technology, and Health
Aspects of the Foreign Policy Agenda of the United States
1A more detailed discussion of the interrelationships between STH developments and foreign policy is included in Science and Technology in US International Affairs, Carnegie Commission on Science, Technology, and Government, January 1992, pages 21-28.
2The committee is aware of the pending appointment of a GS-15 level science advisor to the Assistant Secretary for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs (OES), although the responsibilities of the science advisor have not been clearly defined. While this position should be of help to OES and the Department, it will not substitute for measures recommended by the committee. The committee has discussed the possibilities of a senior science advisor or advisors within the Department, but is not yet prepared to make recommendations on this issue.
4Until recently, INR had a small capability to address STH issues.
Dear Dr. Alberts:
Before he left the Department, Tim Wirth shared with Secretary Albright your candid and constructive discussions regarding the role of science, technology and health (ST&H) in U.S. foreign policy. As you know, the State Department takes its responsibilities in the area of ST&H very seriously. Science is critical to many areas of our foreign policy, as it contributes our international health, environmental quality, national security, economic success, and to meeting global needs for food, water, and energy. It also serves as the basis for many of our bilateral and international programs, such as the U.S.-Japan Common Agenda and scientist exchanges.
Nonetheless, we may not be doing as much in the science, technology and health areas as we can. As part of our ongoing efforts to ensure that these issues are reflected in our foreign policy in the best possible manner, the Secretary has asked me to request that the Academies collaborate with the State Department to study the contributions ST&H can make to foreign policy, and how the Department might better carry out its responsibilities to that end, within its resource constraints. I should note that the Office of Science and Technology Policy is aware of this request and supports this initiative.
The Academies have a long history of scientific excellence and international engagement, and is particularly suited to carry out such a study. I hope you will give this idea serious consideration.
Please contact Melinda Kimble, Acting Assistant Secretary of the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, at (202) 647-1554 to discuss this idea further. We look forward to hearing from you.
OF THE FOREIGN POLICY AGENDA OF THE UNITED STATES
Robert Frosch, Chair, Harvard University
John Axtell, Purdue University
Harry Barnes, Emory University
Gail Cassell, Eli Lilly & Co.
Sue Eckert, Institute for International Economics and Brown University
Robert Fri, The Smithsonian Institution
David Hamburg, Carnegie Corporation of New York
Ronald Lehman II, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
Thomas Lovejoy, The World Bank
David Newsom, University of Virginia
Roland Schmitt, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Eugene Skolnikoff, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Philip Smith, McGeary & Smith
Robert White, The Washington Advisory Group
David Challoner, Foreign Secretary, Institute of Medicine (ex-officio)
Harold Forsen, Foreign Secretary, National Academy of Engineering (ex-officio)
F. Sherwood Rowland, Foreign Secretary, National Academy of Sciences
John Boright, Executive Director for International Affairs
Kelly Robbins, Program Officer
Glenn Schweitzer, Study Director
TECHNOLOGY, AND FOREIGN AFFAIRS
Studies Sponsored by Department of State
Science and Foreign Relations, International Policy Survey
Group, Department of State, 1950 (referred to as "The Berkner
Glennan, T. Keith, Technology and Foreign Affairs, Department
of State, 1976.
Science, Technology, and Foreign Affairs, four volumes, Foreign Service Institute, 1984.
Jones, Teresa C., Science Attaches Now and Tomorrow, Department
of State, September 1, 1991.
Amenson, Pat, "Umbrella Science and Technology Agreements,"
Department of State, August 12, 1996 (draft report).
Environmental Diplomacy: The Environment and US Foreign Policy,
Department of State, April 1997.
Studies Sponsored by US Congress
"The Management of Global Issues," Commission on the
Organization of Government for the Conduct of Foreign Policy,
vol. 1, appendix B, US Government Printing Office, June 1975.
Science and Technology in the Department of State: Bringing
Technical Content into Diplomatic Policy and Operations,
Subcommittee on International Security and Scientific Affairs,
Committee on International Relations, US House of Representatives,
prepared by Congressional Research Service, 1975.
Science, Technology, and Diplomacy in the Age of Interdependence,
Subcommittee on International Security and Scientific Affairs,
Committee on International Relations, US House of Representatives,
prepared by Congressional Research Service, 1976.
Science, Technology, and American Diplomacy, Committee
on International Relations, US House of Representatives, 3 volumes,
prepared by Congressional Research Service, 1977.
International Science, National Science Policy Study, Committee
on Science, US House of Representatives, report in preparation,
Studies of Academy Complex
Scientific Communication and National Security, National
Research Council, National Academy Press, 1983 (referred to as
"The Corson Report").
Wallerstein, Mitchel B. (ed.), Scientific and Technological Cooperation among Industrialized Countries: The Role of the United States, National Research Council, National Academy Press, 1984.
Keatley, Anne G. (ed.), Technological Frontiers and Foreign
Relations, National Research Council, National Academy Press,
The Embassy of the Future: Recommendations for the Design
of Future US Embassy Buildings, National Research Council,
Strengthening US Engineering through International Cooperation:
Some Recommendations for Action, National Academy of Engineering,
National Academy Press, 1987.
Balancing the National Interest: US National Security, Export
Controls, and Global Economic Cooperation, National Research
Council, National Academy Press, 1987.
The Revolution in Information and Communications Technology
and the Conduct of US Foreign Affairs, National Research Council,
National Academy Press, 1988.
Muroyama, J.H. and H. G. Stever (eds.), Globalization of Technology:
International Perspectives, National Academy of Engineering,
National Academy Press, 1988.
Guile, B. R. and H. Brooks (eds.), Technology and Global Industry:
Companies and Nations in the World Economy, National Academy
of Engineering, National Academy Press, 1988.
Finding Common Ground: US Export Controls in a Changed Global
Environment, National Academy Press, 1991.
Proliferation Concerns: Assessing US Efforts To Help Contain
Nuclear and Other Dangerous Materials and Technologies in the
Former Soviet Union, National Research Council, National Academy
America's Vital Interest in Global Health, Institute of
Medicine, National Academy Press, 1997.
The Future of US Nuclear Weapons Policy, National Academy
of Sciences, National Academy Press, 1997.
Maximizing US Interests in Science and Technology Relations
with Japan: Committee on Japan Framework Statement and Report
of the Competitiveness Task Force, National Research Council,
National Academy Press, 1997.
Global Economy, Global Technology, Global Corporations:
Reports of a Joint Task Force of the National Research Council
and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science on the Rights
and Responsibilities of Multinational Corporations in an Age of
Technological Interdependence, National Research Council,
National Academy Press, 1998.
Internet Counts: Measuring the Impacts of the Internet,
National Research Council, National Academy Press, 1998.
Nelson, Joan M., Charles Tilley, and Lee Walker (eds.), Transforming
Post-Communist Political Economies, National Research Council,
National Academy Press, 1998.
Skolnikoff, Eugene B., Science, Technology, and American Foreign
Policy, MIT Press, 1967.
Pollack, Herman, "Science and Technology Advice to the Secretary
of State," 1988.
Science and Technology in US International Affairs, Carnegie
Commission on Science, Technology, and Government, January 1992.
International Environmental Research and Assessment: Proposals
for Better Organization and Decision Making, Carnegie Commission
on Science, Technology, and Government, July 1992.
Partnerships for Global Development: The Clearing Horizon,
Carnegie Commission on Science, Technology, and Government, December
Science, Technology, and Government for a Changing World,
Carnegie Commission on Science, Technology, and Government, April
Skolnikoff, Eugene B., The Elusive Transformation: Science, Technology, and the Evolution of International Politics, Princeton University Press, 1993.
WHO MET WITH COMMITTEE
US Department of State
Strobe Talbott, Deputy Secretary of State
Thomas Pickering, Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs
Bonnie Cohen, Undersecretary of State for Management
Wendy Sherman, Counselor of the Department of State
Edward Gnehm, Jr., Director General of the Foreign Service
Princeton Lyman, Assistant Secretary of State for International Organizations
Julia Taft, Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees, and Migration
Melinda Kimble, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs (OES)
L. Craig Johnstone, Director for Resources, Plans, and Policy, Office of the Secretary of State
Thomas Fingar, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Analysis, Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR)
William Wood, Director, Office of the Geographer and Global Issues, INR
Richard Brown, Senior Summit Coordinator, Summit of the Americas
Steven Aoki, Director, Office of Regional Nonproliferation, Bureau of Political-Military Affairs (PM)
Michael Rosenthal, Chief, Nuclear Safeguards and Technology Division, Nonproliferation and Regional Arms Control Bureau, Arms Control and Disarmament Agency
Richard Stratford, Director, Office of Nuclear Energy Affairs, PM
Zachary Teich, Deputy Director, Office of Export Control and Conventional Arms Nonproliferation Policy, PM
Ruth Whiteside, Deputy Director, Foreign Service Institute
Lisa Fox, Director, Economics Training Program, Foreign Service Institute
Todd Greentree, Senior Advisor, Office of Resources, Plans, and Policy, Office of the Secretary of State
Kenneth Thomas, FSO-1, OES
Cathleen Enright, GS-14, OES
Pamela Pearson, FSO-2, OES
Deborah Zamora Grout, FSO-4, OES
Other Government Offices and Agencies
Kerri-Ann Jones, Acting Director, Office of Science and Technology Policy
Joy Riggs-Perla, Director, Office of Health and Nutrition, AID Bureau for Global Programs, Field Support, and Research
Richard Ries, Division of International Programs, National Science
Justin Bloom, former Science Counselor
Jerry Whitman, former Science Counselor
Lawrence Kanarek, Human Resources Specialist, McKinsey & Company
U.S. Department of State
Stuart Eizenstat, Undersecretary of State for Economic, Business, and Agricultural Affairs
John Holum, Director, Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, and Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs
Alan Larson, Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs
Phyllis Oakley, Assistant Secretary of State for Intelligence and Research
Ruth Davis, Director, Foreign Service Institute
Peter Romero, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of Inter-American Affairs
E. Michael Southwick, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Organizations, Bureau of International Organization Affairs
Rust Deming, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State (designate), Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs
Witney Schneidman, Senior Advisor, Bureau of African Affairs
U.S. Agency for International Development
Sally Shelton Colby, Assistant Administrator, Bureau for Global Programs, Field Support, and Research
Mark Schneider, Assistant Administrator, Bureau for Latin America and the Caribbean
Carol Peasley, Assistant Administrator Designate, Bureau for Africa
Donald Presley, Acting Assistant Administrator, Bureau for Europe and the New Independent States
Leonard Rogers, Acting Assistant Administrator, Bureau for Humanitarian Response
Ann Van Dusen, Deputy Assistant Administrator,
Bureau for Asia and the Near East
Pierre Perrolle, Director, National Science Foundation Division of International Programs, and his staff
Tony Chavez, Bruce Sasser, and Sheryl Anderson, Office of Management and Budget
Michael Champness, Committee on Science, U.S. House of Representatives
(Preliminary Analysis of United States Strategic Plan for International Affairs)
This analysis involved judgments as to whether each of the 107
strategies articulated in the Strategic Plan has a significant
STH component. For the purpose of presentation, the 107 strategies
are grouped into the seven areas of national interests set forth
in the Strategic Plan. This analysis is quite subjective.
However, a degree of systematization has been adopted by applying
a four-part classification of the interactions of STH concerns
and foreign policy as indicated in the attached summary table.
Several results of this analysis are as follows:
While STH concerns are relatively important in four national interest areasNational Security, Economic Prosperity, American Citizens and Border Security, and Global Issuesthey play a limited role in the strategies for each area. STH content is most prevalent in National Security, with relevance in six of the eleven strategies.
STH hardly appears in the other three areasLaw Enforcement, Democracy and Human Rights, and Humanitarian Response. While there would appear to be significant STH content in these three areas, the Strategic Plan as written does not provide much opportunity for STH contributions.
STH seems to be considered largely as a handmaiden of policy in the areas of National Security and American Citizens and Border Security. That is, STH capabilities are a vehicle for implementing non-STH policy objectives, and support of STH activities is not itself an objective of policy.
STH considerations play a broader role in the areas of Economic Prosperity and Global Issues. However, even in these areas, its handmaiden role is important.
The analysis suggests that STH factors are integral to foreign
policy on a broad basis. STH considerations should be in the
mainstream flow of operations in the bureaus of the Department
of State and in the overseas missions where policy is formulated
and implemented. This intimate interaction is required both to
ensure that STH capabilities are accessible when foreign policy
officials realize that they need support and to enlighten officials
about opportunities to use STH capabilities to achieve their objectives.
The Strategic Plan suggests that foreign policy officials
give a low priority to international STH policy per se.
Issues such as international collaboration on mega-science projects
are not addressed in the strategies. Even if such issues are
not considered to be a part of an overall foreign policy strategy,
the role of foreign policy officials in representing such interests
should be clarified.
UNITED STATES STRATEGIC PLAN FOR INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS
More than one category may apply to
a single strategy.