The latest group of Science Envoys was named in late 2014, and the State Department has kept them active since then. Their travel involves meetings with scientists and engineers in various countries in support of research, educational support, and exchanges between countries.
Back in January Dr. Geraldine Richmond traveled to Thailand and Vietnam. Richmond is the Presidential Chair of Chemistry at the University of Oregon, and (among other things) is the President of the AAAS (though she was President-elect at the time). Richmond has returned to the region twice since then, visiting Cambodia, Laos and Thailand in March; and Vietnam, Laos and Thailand in June. Her meetings have included an effort to strengthen research networks in the lower Mekong region.
In February Dr. Peter Hotez traveled to Morocco in Februrary. Hotez is an expert in tropical diseases and vaccines. Later that same month Dr. Arun Majumdar (former director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy) traveled to Poland, and his meetings had a special emphasis on U.S.-Poland energy collaboration.
The fourth of the current cohort of Science Envoys, Dr. Jane Lubchenco, is traveling in South Africa, Mauritius and the Seychelles throughout the last two weeks of July. As the Science Envoy for the Ocean, Lubchenco’s meetings will involve scientists, business leaders, and other ocean users in the region. Lubchenco’s background is in oceanography, and she served as Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration during President Obama’s first term.
To date there have been 13 science envoys, whom have visited 30 countries (some of them more than once).