Dr. Norhayati Abdullah, has been named as one of the 17 ASEAN scientists representing Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) to be selected for the prestigious 2019/2020 ASEAN Science & Technology Fellowship by the ASEAN Foundation with support from ASEAN, the United States (US) government through the United States Agency for International Development Aid (USAID) and the US Mission to ASEAN. Malaysia is also represented by Dr. Zamir Zulkefli, from Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM).

The fellows commenced their one-year journey by attending the orientation and close-out workshop, participation in the 76th Committee of Science, Technology and Innovation (COSTI) meeting and Capacity Development Workshop from June 23-30 in Bali, Indonesia.

Since its inception in 2014, the ASEAN Science and Technology Fellowship initiative has striven to support and encourage young scientists in Southeast Asia to work together with policy makers in integrating the ASEAN Community and advancing regional cooperation on ASEAN strategic priorities. Through this programme, fellows are appointed to the relevant ministries in their respective countries to continue research in their topics of expertise within the ASEAN Community’s prioritised areas. Modelled after the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science and Technology Policy Fellowship Program and piloted by the USAID ASEAN-U.S. Partnership for Good Governance, Equitable and Sustainable Development and Security (PROGRESS) program, the fellowship has thus far empowered 35 alumni. Under the management of the ASEAN Foundation, the fellowship is now on its fourth cycle (https://aseanstfellowship.aseanfoundation.org/).

These fellows were selected based on their track record of achievements and potential to advance evidence-based policy making in ASEAN. Norhayati is majoring in environmental engineering and is actively involved in water management programs and activities at the national and global level. She advocates environmental sciences and sustainability through the Joint Degree Program courses between Malaysia-Japan International Institute of Technology (MJIIT) and University of Tsukuba, Japan. As the Vice President of the Malaysian Water Association (MWA) and Fellow of the International Water Association (IWA), Norhayati aims to advocate awareness and empower education among receiving public through effective communication of policy and governance via her fellowship tenure until July 2020 as part of the public policy challenges.

Tremendous opportunities are outlined within the fellowship program for early and mid-career scientists consisting of professional  capacity development workshop, led by the Head Foundation involving experienced speakers from the Young Scientist Network (YSN) Malaysia. Each fellow will be assigned to the relevant Ministry in their countries for project deliberation that concurs with the National priorities and strategies.

 Norhayati is currently the Associate Director at the Office of UTM International and recipient of the 2018  L’Oreal-UNESCO for Women in Science Fellowship Award and 2017 US-ASEAN Fulbright Visiting Scholar Initiative.