External Relations strives to maintain and enhance Caltech's reputation as an able steward of public trust in its conduct of world-class science and engineering research and education, as well as an active institutional citizen committed to the Pasadena area. External Relations is also responsible for:
- Establishing and improving relationships with external audiences,
- Monitoring governmental activity that affects university education, research and training, while maintaining collegial relations with other research universities' governmental affairs offices nationwide,
- Acting responsibly and responsively in its advocacy on federal, state, and local governmental matters, while serving as one of the primary points of contact for government officials and agencies seeking information about Caltech,
- Collaborates with the legislative affairs arm of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL),
- Monitoring campus outreach connections with the surrounding community, and
- Interfacing with local organizations.