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Towards a Science and Technology Policy Fellowship Program for Colorado State Policymaking

Max Boykoff, Matthew Druckenmiller

The Center for Science and Technology Policy Research at the University of Colorado Boulder is leading a strategic planning process for a Science and Technology Policy Fellows (STPF) Program within the Colorado State Legislature and Executive Branch Agencies. The intended program will place highly trained PhD-level scientists and engineers in one-year placements with decision-makers to provide an inhouse source of evidence-based information and a resource for targeted policy-relevant research. Fellows will learn the intricacies of the state policy-making process, be exposed to opportunities for science to inform decisions, and develop a deeper appreciation for Colorado’s science and technology needs. The program’s ultimate goal is to help foster a decision-making arena informed by evidence-based information relevant to emerging and current policy issues. Throughout 2017, this effort will develop the strategic plan for the program by engaging partners within and beyond the University of Colorado, including key collaborators with experience working with the Colorado legislature.


  • Listen to a bipartisan contingent of state legislators on their views for how the program could be most helpful to the Colorado state policy process.
  • Outreach to various Executive Agencies to explore where and how potential fellows could contribute to existing programs.
  • Develop strategies for attracting top-notch scientists with expertise relevant to Colorado issues, such as within water resources, wildfire management, energy, and marijuana legalization.
  • Outline professional development opportunities to support fellows in becoming science policy leaders, adept at contributing to the science-policy interface.
  • Position CSTPR to eventually host and implement the Fellows Program, building on a foundation of sustained collaboration between CU and Colorado state decision-makers.


  • Convene a taskforce of expert partners from CU and beyond to advise the planning process.
  • Host planning workshops at CU-Boulder with potential program champions, collaborators, and funders.
  • Develop a series of science briefings to demonstrate and concept of ‘usable science’ for policymaking.
  • Create a long-term plan for managing the program, informed through collaboration with the federal-based AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellows Program.


Project Leads

Matthew Druckenmiller, druckenmiller@nsidc.org
National Snow & Ice Data Center, CIRES

Maxwell Boykoff, boykoff@colorado.edu
Center for Science & Technology Policy Research, CIRES