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An Overview of the AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellowships

Fellowship Overview

AAAS manages and administers S&T Policy Fellowships in seven program areas to provide the opportunity for accomplished scientists, physicians and engineers to participate in and contribute to the federal policymaking process while learning firsthand about the intersection of science and policy.

The Policy Fellowships engage scientists, physicians and engineers from a broad range of disciplines, backgrounds and career stages to contribute their knowledge and analytical skills to the federal government, learn first-hand about policymaking and implementation at the federal level, and build S&T leadership equipped to address complex societal challenges. The Fellowships provide an opportunity to develop knowledge of the interactions of branches of government, balance of power, federal budgetary process, policymaking processes, understanding of stakeholders and factors affecting policy, and create political awareness.


The fellowships offer placements in in congressional offices and executive branch agencies. Congressional placements are funded by approximately 33 partner scientific and engineering societies and executive branch agencies are funded by the hosting offices.

Selection Process

The fellowships are highly competitive and use a peer-review selection process. Review is followed by individual interviews for semi-finalists in Washington, DC, conducted by selection committees comprised of professionals with expertise in the interface of science, technology, and policy. Semi-finalists selected as finalists are then invited back to Washington DC for placement interviews with a host office.

Application and Eligibility

The online application cycle opens 1 May 2014 and applicants must have a PhD or an equivalent doctoral-level degree on/before the application deadline of 1 November 2014. Individuals with a master's degree in engineering and at least three years of professional experience also may apply. Applicants must be U.S. citizens. Federal employees are not eligible for the fellowships.

Successful candidates should be able to demonstrate solid S&T credentials for their career stage, show a commitment to apply scientific or technical expertise to serve society, exhibit good communication skills, especially to non-scientific audiences, demonstrate strong problem-solving skills, initiative, maturity, good judgment, leadership qualities, and match to fellowship program area.

Details and More Information

The Fellowship year begins 1 September of each year with a comprehensive orientation program prior to the start of placements  in the various sectors of government. AAAS also provides professional development programming throughout the year for Fellows.

Click here to learn more about the Fellowships: