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About the Fulbright Program

Karen Barton Fulbright travels

April 28, 2023

The Fulbright Program is a United States cultural exchange program offering students, teachers, scholars, scientists, artists and professionals in more than 160 countries the opportunity to study, teach, conduct research, exchange ideas and contribute to mutual understanding. It was founded by U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright in 1946 and is considered one of the most widely recognized and prestigious scholarships in the world.

Barton has been the recipient of three types of Fulbright awards, the Fulbright Hays which is primarily focused on educational projects; the Fulbright Specialist award which stem from a project that has been designed by a country or institution within a country and primarily focuses on research; and the Fulbright Scholar award which can be focused on research, teaching or both. Below is a complete list of her Fulbright awards.

Fulbright Hays

  • 2007, Brazil: Environmental sustainability in the Pantanal, the world’s largest inland wetland
  • 2010, Middle East (Qatar, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates): environmental and social sustainability in the Arabian Gul
  • 2016, Senegal: The Great Green Wall Initiative, an effort to halt land degradation and desertification in the Sahel and Sahara desert
  • 2021, Mexico: Afro-Mexican geography and UNESCO heritage sites
  • 2022, Norway: Renewable energy resources and the country’s expansion of those resources on lands owned by indigenous Sami communities.

Fulbright Specialist

  • 2019, Nepal: Natural hazards mapping. The work was part of a community resiliency project after the 2015 Gorkha earthquake, which killed over 9,000 people.
  • 2023, Bangladesh: Mitigation and education efforts to help reduce plastics pollution in the Bay of Bengal, specifically focusing on efforts targeting single-use plastics.

Fulbright Core Fellowship

  • 2016, Burma-Myanmar: visiting scholar at Dagon University – most teaching focused
  • 2019, Burma-Myanmar: Yezin Agricultural University – focus also teaching