Whenever there's some kind of alien artifact found, or an extraterrestrial ship spotted in space, the government will always have [[ThePlan some kind of official plan]] for dealing with FirstContact. This trope is for when there is a "team" assembled, usually comprised of scientists, mathematicians, {{cunning linguist}}s, and usually a few oddball specialties.

The reasoning is that, because nobody knows how the heck to talk with the aliens or how to interact with them, you'll want a team with a wealth of knowledge to draw on in order to ease the FirstContact. For example, if you can't understand the Aliens language, you might have your mathematician demonstrate a little FirstContactMath. Or, if the aliens behavior is bizarre and incomprehensible, you might have an anthropologist on the team to help discern their meaning.


[[folder: Fan Fiction]]
* ''Fanfic/MassEffectClashOfCivilizations'' has a meeting between two of them, one comprised of Liara, Tali, Saren, Mordin, and a few others and the other being the crew of UNSC ''Hades Gate''.
* Played with in ''Fanfic/TheNextFrontier''; the [[VideoGame/KerbalSpaceProgram Kerbals]] can't send a full team of anthropologists, linguists and so on along on their first interstellar mission because the ship just isn't big enough, but thanks to the [[SubspaceAnsible FTL communications system]] they have the anthropology and linguistics departments of every university on Kerbin and Duna for MissionControl. The actual in-person contact team are three veteran astronauts, one engineer who helped create the AlcubierreDrive and one skilled CommunicationsOfficer who's supposed to [[AliensStealCable scan for radio and TV signals]] [[LearnedEnglishFromWatchingTelevision so they can start picking up the language]] if they ''do'' find some aliens.

[[folder: Film ]]

* In ''Film/{{Sphere}}'' by Michael Crichton, when an alien ship is discovered at the bottom of the ocean, the government sends a team composed of a psychologist, a mathematician, a biologist, and an astrophysicist. Later becomes a [[SubvertedTrope subversion]]: the psychologist who wrote the "Emergency FirstContact Plan" admits that, after having been approached by the government to produce the plan, he thought it was so ridiculous that he lazily based all his recommendations on popular science fiction.
* According to Agent Kay in the movie ''Film/MenInBlack'', first contact with aliens was made in 1961, with 9 humans present: "7 agents, 1 astronomer, and 1 kid who got lost on the wrong backroad", who was, in fact, Kay himself.
* In ''Film/TheDayTheEarthStoodStill1951'' when they can't do a world leader group meeting with Klaatu, due to everyone's squabbling, they send in the best people from a number of different fields for the big formal meeting with him.
* Played with in ''Film/CloseEncountersOfTheThirdKind'': the aliens [[spoiler: are recruiting a First Contact Team from the humans via subliminal communication]]. The government has its own team ready, but the only human the aliens will deal with is [[spoiler: Roy Neary, who is the only one of the alien-recruited humans to actually make it all the way to the contact site]].


[[folder: Literature ]]

* In ''Communion of Dreams'' by James Downey, when an artifact is discovered on Titan (Saturn's largest moon), the government sends a team similar to the ''Sphere'' example, but also includes an anthropologist, an expert on Game Theory, and an artist.
* In ''Literature/{{Blindsight}}'', by Peter Watts:
-->Who you do send to meet the alien when the alien doesn't want to meet? \\
You send a linguist with multiple personalities carved surgically into her brain. \\
You send a biologist so radically interfaced with machinery that he sees x-rays and tastes ultra-sound, so compromised by grafts and splices he no longer feels his own flesh. \\
You send a pacifist warrior whose career-defining moment was an act of treason. \\
You send a monster to command them all, an extinct hominid predator once called vampire, recalled from the grave with the voodoo of recombinant genetics and the blood of sociopaths. \\
And you send a synthesist - an informational topologist with half his mind gone - as an interface between here and there, a conduit through which the Dead Center might hope to understand the Bleeding Edge.
* In the novel ''{{Literature/Contact}}'', an international team is assembled in order to make contact with the aliens who sent the signal.
* In ''Literature/TheVoyageOfTheSpaceBeagle'', the eponymous ship is staffed with a wide selection of specialists, including a Nexialist, a scientist who specializes in the general use and assimilation of knowledge.
* In the Salvadorean novel ''Yo Soy La Memoria'' ("I Am The Memory") by Hugo Lindo there is a team comprised of the wisemen from several different fields, tasked with checking upon some wreckage. It included: an Astrologer, a Physics man, a Biologist, a [[PhotographicMemory walking memory log]], and a Medic.
* In the ''Franchise/StarWars'' [[Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse Expanded Universe]], ''The Essential Guide to Alien Species'' reveals that the Old Republic had these.
* In Creator/JohnHemry's ''Literature/TheLostFleet'' series, the fleet is sent into alien space with xenologists who had attempted to work out how to contact aliens if they ever found them. [[spoiler:They turn out to be much less useful than a general-turned-politican who had been sent along as an official ambassador, and who had many fewer preconceived notions.]]


[[folder: Live Action TV ]]

* Any ''Franchise/StarTrek'' episode that revolved around first contact, from any season, often had this with the away team, although they avert it almost as much.
* ''Series/StargateSG1'' had the main team be a pretty balanced collection in their team leaders: a military officer with sufficient authority to represent the United States to foreign powers, a physicist who can perform preliminary analysis of alien technology encountered, an anthropologist and linguist who can help with establishing friendly relations with any cultures they encounter, and an alien defector knowledgeable about the greater galaxy that Earth is stepping into. Also somewhat present in the ''Film/{{Stargate}}'' movie.
** Similar to SG-1, the team in ''Series/StargateAtlantis'' is frequently sent out on first contact missions, though they eschew an anthropologist in favor of a "native guide" in the form of Teyla.
* The pilot episode of the short lived sci-fi show ''Series/{{Threshold}}'' starts with one of these being organized.


[[folder:Newspaper Comics]]
* In the ''ComicStrip/ModestyBlaise'' storyline "Take Me To Your Leader", a respected scientist and government advisor encounters what he believes is a first contact situation, and Sir Gerald Tarrant is given the job of selecting a small discreet first contact team. Modesty Blaise and Willie Garvin are his first and only choices; their ability to sniff out a scam is an obvious qualification, but Tarrant suggests that he would have picked them even if he didn't suspect a hoax -- of all the people he knows, they have the broadest range of interests, solid grounding in the basics of many disciplines, and open and enquiring minds, which he considers more likely to be useful than any number of experts whose expertise might be about to be proven useless.

[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]

* The IISS in {{Traveller}}


[[folder: Web Original ]]

* Literature/TheJournalEntries have White's Teams, which are often based on White's Ships, named for White's Theorem: "A space-faring species' first encounter with another space-faring species is most likely to be a distress signal." This occurs multiple times both on-screen and in backstories.

[[folder: Video Games ]]

* Although only one of them is in on it at first, the three protagonists of ''VideoGame/TheDig'' are such a team. Ostensibly, they were organised in order to stop an asteroid collision, but the government also picked them on the basis that the asteroid had intelligent beings behind it - and it did.
* In ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiStrangeJourney'', the expedition into the [[NegativeSpaceWedgie Schwarzwelt]] consists of both scientists and soldiers. It's not initially conceived of as a First Contact Team, but they end up making contact with intelligent life within the Schwarzwelt, and their varied skills help see the mission through to completion.


[[folder: Real Life ]]

* Any diplomatic mission meant to travel beyond the sphere of a given ruler's sphere; to chase an interesting rumor, for instance, or to begin relations with a previously isolated people. These were usually sent for utilitarian rather than scientific purposes and some behaved quite brutally. Yet in fact they were a first contact team and may have been the inspiration for this Trope.
** Vasco De Gama was sent around the Cape of Good Hope for instance; in his case the mission was botched through bad intelligence. They found India and found it had been almost as rich as legends painted. Unfortunately they hadn't planned for that just yet and had only trade beads in for gifts because they were expecting to meet local tribes; and of course beads were just insulting to the Grand Mogul. In this case they were able to settle for [[GunboatDiplomacy another kind]] of means which was good enough for the purpose as no local prince had much of a navy.
** The Polo family had the patronage of the papacy which thought they might be able to find a potential ally against the Moslems.
** One of the first explorers in history was a Chinese courtier sent to an unmapped kingdom which was famous for horses (which the Chinese army was short on), and rumored to have a grudge against some of China's enemies.
** Commodore Perry was America's first contact team to Japan. Other than a small Dutch presence on an island just offshore of Kagoshima who were only allowed to trade in Japan once a year, it was the first large-scale Western presence in Japan in 250 years of Tokugawa Shogunate rule (Japan having all but [[HiddenElfVillage shut itself off from the rest of the world]] as a result of adopting its ''sakoku'' policy).
** Once Japan realized just how far behind it was technologically, the shogunate sent its own embassy on a tour of Europe, eventually setting the stage for its very rapid industrialization in the Meiji Era.