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WVU’s Bridge Initiative Awarded Grant for Science and Technology Policy Fellowship Program

West Virginia Capitol

The Bridge Initiative for Science and Technology Policy, Leadership, and Communications at West Virginia University (WVU) is pleased to announce the award of a $100,000 grant from the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL)  State Science Policy Fellowship Planning Grant Initiative, supported by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. This award will support a West Virginia Science and Technology Policy Fellowship (STPF) program that will provide rigorous, nonpartisan science and technology policy research and analysis for members of the West Virginia Legislature starting in January 2024.

“Science and technology are at the heart of today’s increasingly complex public policy challenges,” said Bridge Director  Joan Centrella. “This award from NCSL’s Center for Results-Driven Governing  will provide West Virginia state legislators with ‘on-demand’ access to science and technology resources as important inputs to the policymaking process.”

Two full-time STPF fellows will be selected from applicants holding a Ph.D. or other graduate degree in areas of science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM). In response to requests from West Virginia state legislators, the STPF Fellows will draft science and technology (S&T) notes starting with the beginning of the legislative session in January 2024. These evidence-based notes will provide an overview of the topic from a scientific and technical perspective, explaining the topic in jargon-free terms with the focus on West Virginia’s needs and potential.

Fellows writing these one-page notes will outline the current policies, opportunities, and challenges. They will also analyze policies from other states responding to similar challenges or opportunities. West Virginia legislators will then be able to incorporate this analysis into their decision making as they see fit. S&T notes will not make policy recommendations.

Illustrative policy topics to be addressed by these notes include health, economic development, energy, education, workforce, environment, and transportation. Sample S&T notes are available at this link.

“This S&T fellowship program is a great opportunity for West Virginia,” said Joan Centrella. “We look forward to working with legislators and partners to serve our state.”