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Lassina Zerbo Receives 2018 Science Diplomacy Award


The AAAS Award for Science Diplomacy recognizes
an individual or small group in the scientific, engineering or foreign affairs communities
for outstanding contributions to science diplomacy. This year we honor Lassina Zerbo for his leadership
and commitment to applying science and diplomacy to eliminate nuclear testing. Dr. Zerbo has served as Executive Secretary
of the Vienna-based Comprehensive Nuclear-Test- Ban Treaty Organization, or CTBTO, since 2013. He has been at the forefront of strengthening
this organization, which is the center of excellence for nuclear test-ban verification,
and has spearheaded efforts towards universalization of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty
or CTBT. As one nominator noted, ‘the intersection
of science and diplomacy is perhaps nowhere else as evident as in the half-century of
efforts to prohibit nuclear-weapon testing.’ Zerbo’s receipt of this award also recognizes
the key role of science in diplomacy in multilateral agreements such as the CTBT, and on the issue
of nuclear testing in general. A citizen of Burkina Faso, Zerbo has a 25-year
career characterized by a broad range of scientific, technical, and diplomatic expertise. He’s held a number of key positions at the
CTBTO. He’s demonstrated his profound skill at
promoting dialogue and interaction among scientists, policy-makers, academics and civil society,
and encouraging diverse groups to work collaboratively. He’s tackled difficult challenges and, through
his efforts, promoted world peace. And he’s engaged and inspired young people around the world to use science to make a better, safer world.

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