Norman P. Neureiter, the first director of the AAAS Center for Science, Technology and Security Policy and now a senior adviser to the Center, has been honored by the Japanese government for his many years of working to advance U.S.-Japan relations and science cooperation.
Neureiter will receive the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star decoration, one of the highest honors awarded by the Japanese government, in a ceremony at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on 5 November 2010. The investiture ceremony will be followed by a reception with Emperor Akihito. Neureiter is being cited for his “significant career contributions in promoting science and technology cooperation and exchange between Japan and the United States.”
For much of his career, Neureiter—who received a doctorate in organic chemistry from Northwestern University—has been devoted to international engagement and a belief that cooperation on science and technology can play a very constructive role in foreign policy.
“We are delighted that Japan has seen fit to honor Dr. Neureiter’s global science leadership in this very prestigious way,” said Alan I. Leshner, chief executive officer of AAAS and executive publisher of Science. “He is a fine colleague who leads both intellectually and through his own extensive international activities.”
Neureiter said the award ceremony and reception give him and his wife, Georgine, “a poignant sense of the rich historical traditions of Japan, while recognizing at the same time Japan’s own unique contributions to cutting-edge science and technology.” He also noted that “just a month ago I was here in Tokyo and spoke at the 50th birthday celebration of the establishment of the National Science Foundation’s Tokyo office, which is still very active in fostering scientific cooperation between our two countries.”
Neureiter started working with Japan in 1963, when he became the first permanent U.S. program director for the U.S.-Japan Cooperative Science Program that was initiated under President John F. Kennedy. From 1989 to 1994, he lived in Tokyo and served as vice president of Texas Instruments Asia.
In 1994, Neureiter was asked by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to chair the U.S. side of an advisory committee established under the U.S.-Japan Science Cooperation Agreement. He served as U.S. co-chair of that committee, the Joint High-Level Advisory Panel, until 2000.
After retirement from Texas Instruments in 1996, Neureiter served as a consultant until being appointed in September 2000 as the first Science and Technology Adviser to the U.S. Secretary of State. He served briefly under Madeleine Albright and then under Colin Powell. Neureiter joined AAAS in 2004 to lead the newly organized Center for Science, Technology and Security Policy. In addition to now serving as a senior adviser to that center, Neureiter also is a senior adviser to the AAAS Center for Science Diplomacy.
Japanese government orders are awarded twice a year, with foreign recipients selected for outstanding contributions to building good relationships with Japan. Among the Americans who have been honored recently are J. Dennis Hastert, former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, and Arden Bement, former director of the National Science Foundation.
Neureiter, who speaks Japanese, continues to be engaged with U.S.-Japan relations and science cooperation. He visits Japan at least once a year for professional activities, including his presentation on science diplomacy as part of the celebration of the founding of NSF’s Tokyo office.
See the Japanese government’s news release on the award to Norman P. Neureiter.