UPDATED Policy Fellowships For Scientists & Engineers

23 Aug

I regularly receive emails about breaking into the policy realm, becoming a science writer, or career advice in general. Recently, the volume of these has gone way up. Perhaps it’s the economy, hiring freezes at major institutions, and the overproduction of talented, newly-minted PhDs on the market contributing to a tough job environment. Maybe there’s also renewed interest in becoming a Renaissance scientist–the type of individual combining her or his scientific expertise with writing, communication, art, and more to help broaden public understanding of science and its influence in society.

I’d like to remind readers of my list of Policy Fellowships For Scientists & Engineers and encourage those seeking opportunities beyond and within the ivory towers of academia to take a look and consider applying. In 2009 I realized there was no comprehensive clearinghouse of what’s available, so I worked with a group of terrific staffers and interns at American Association for the Advancement of Science to come up with this list. I also hope students, professors, and industry members will kindly add any fellowships they know of that are not currently here in comments below as I update this regularly.


AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowships

National Academies Christine Mirzayan Science & Technology Policy Graduate Fellowship Program

National Academies Jefferson Science Fellowships

Presidential Management Fellows Program

The Royal Society (U.K.) MP-Scientist Pairing Scheme

The Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellowships Program

American Chemical Society

Hellman Fellowship

American Psychological Association

American Physical Society

Belfer Center, Kennedy School of Government

American Institute of Biological Sciences

American Astronomical Society – John Bahcall Public Policy Fellowship

American Society for Microbiology

National Human Genome Research Institute

Health and Aging Policy Fellowship

Society for Research in Child Development Policy Fellowship

Department of Commerce – Commerce Science and Technology Fellowship

ASPH/EPA Environmental Health Fellowship Program

American Institute of Physics and Member Society Government Science Fellowships

Harvard University – Science, Technology, and Public Policy Fellowships

American Society for Biochemisty and Molecular Biology

American Geophysical Union – Congressional Science Fellowship

American Society of Human Genetics

California Science and Technology Policy Fellowships

John A. Knauss Sea Grant Fellowship (I did this one!)

American Chemical Society San Diego Section – Public Policy Fellowship

Optical Society of America – Congressional Fellows Program

Social Science Research Council – Abe Fellowship Program

David A. Winston Health Policy Fellowship – Association of University Programs in Health Administration

National Center for Health Statistics – Health Policy Fellowship Program

Packer Policy Fellowships – Australian-American Health Policy Fellowships Program

The ASPH/CDC Allan Rosenfield Global Health Fellowship Program

The Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center Postdoctoral Fellowship in Comparative Health Policy

Geological Society of America Congressional Science Fellowship


American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

NASA Congressional Fellowship

Morris Udall Foundation

Academy of Medical Sciences/Wellcome Trust

Aldo Leopold Leadership Program

Harkness Fellowship


7 Responses to “UPDATED Policy Fellowships For Scientists & Engineers”

  1. Heather August 23, 2010 at 11:42 am #

    Thanks for a great list Sheril! The link to the Research!America science policy intern/fellowship was just updated to include our October 15 deadline for winter/spring applications. You can find more information here: http://www.researchamerica.org/intern_sciencepolicy

  2. Sheril Kirshenbaum August 23, 2010 at 12:39 pm #

    Thanks Heather,

    Link updated!

  3. Erin August 24, 2010 at 3:08 am #

    Thank you so much for this list! With a year and a bit before the end of my PhD, it’s good to have these things around!

  4. Lyndsay August 24, 2010 at 8:29 am #

    Thanks for including The Optical Society in your list of Fellowships, Sheril. We recently relaunched our website though, so our old links no longer work — sorry about that! More info on our Fellowships can be found here: http://www.osa.org/about_osa/public_policy/congressional_fellowships/default.aspx


  5. Sheril Kirshenbaum August 24, 2010 at 10:57 am #

    Thanks Lyndsay,


  6. MJMurphy August 24, 2010 at 6:13 pm #

    Hi! I am an incoming 2010-11 CRP Fellow at MIT. My personal decision to go for this program was the access to MIT’s academic community and coursework with hands-on research and internship in chosen field.

    Thank you for the above comprehensive list. (I am considering MIT’s new master’s program in Science Communication-I believe Chris Mooney just completed ? )

  7. (a different) Heather August 25, 2010 at 1:52 pm #

    Thank you for this great list! I am currently a Ph.D. student studying the applications of synthetic biology. Because of a recent advance in the field (), I’ve been paying particular attention to the reaction in D.C. (). All of this hullabaloo has really sparked an interest in science policy and communication.

    This post has been a blessing for me, saving me a lot of time searching online for various fellowships. Since I still have 1.5-2 years left until I finish my degree, I was wondering if you have any suggestions in what I can do until then to be immersed more in science policy and communication. I would greatly appreciate any recommendations for general areas of volunteer work, classes, or national clubs that would help me see what working in this field is really like.

    Thank you again!

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