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The Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) is an intergovernmental, not-for-profit organisation which brings together the people of Asia and Europe to address common global challenges. It is the only permanent institution of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) political dialogue Process and is publicly funded by voluntary contributions from 53 ASEM Partners.

Education is one of ASEF’s seven key thematic areas. In this field, we connect the youth, students, teachers & educators, higher education & EdTech experts with policy makers from 51 countries across Asia and Europe. Our projects contribute towards Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and innovation in formal and informal education through technology. We organise projects that contribute to inclusive & equitable access across all education sectors and engage civil society and government stakeholders in interdisciplinary and lifelong learning opportunities to enhance quality education. Further, we bring the voice of the youth into the ASEM Process and facilitate a structured dialogue between young people and ASEM Leaders and Foreign Ministers. We contribute to the ASEM Education Process and the agenda of the ASEM Education Ministers’ Meetings (ASEMMEs).

Over the past 5 years ASEFEdu has organised more than 40 projects in secondary education, higher education & the youth sector. These activities have provided the opportunity for experiential learning and capacity building to over 3,000 participants from all 51 ASEM countries. We have ensured that our projects have an equal gender balance and have provided opportunities for participants with disabilities to join. Our projects primarily contribute to three Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):

1. SDG4: Quality Education
2. SDG8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
3. SDG13: Climate Action

In 2019 we brought together 524 participants to 6 ASEM countries – 48% female, 52% male.

Our Work

Teaching and Learning

ASEF Classroom Network (ASEFClassNet)
The ASEF Classroom Network has engaged schools in all ASEM countries since 1998, through 15 conferences and over 400 school collaborations. More than 1,600 teachers and 34,000 students have participated in an ASEFClassNet activity. Through this project, we connect secondary, high and vocational school teachers and students and facilitate school collaborations and exchanges across the 51 ASEM countries. The network has explored themes of Artificial Intelligence, Education for Sustainable Development (ESD), Gender Quality in STEM, and Teacher Training.

Young Leaders

ASEF Summer University (ASEFSU)
The ASEF Summer University (ASEFSU) is a 2-week experiental learning journey and "Interdisciplinary Innovathon" for students and young professionals. Designed to foster cross-cultural exchanges and networks among youth from ASEM countries, it offers opportunities for students and young professionals to broaden their horizons, deepen their knowledge on contemporary issues and propose concrete solutions to pressing societal challenges. ASEFSU tackles various themes and aims to create a positive impact within ASEM societies, offering tangible results and daring proposals for innovation, and promotes sustainable development. 

Model ASEM
The Model ASEM introduces students to the world of international relations, Asia-Europe diplomacy and negotiation. It is held in conjunction with the actual ASEM Foreign Ministers' Meeting (ASEMFMM), and it is a political simulation of the actual political process to generate interest and increase awareness of ASEM among university students. In addition to the main Model ASEM conference, local student and youth associations organise Model ASEM Spin-off Editions which are supported by ASEF. 

ASEF Young Leaders Summit (ASEFYLS)
The ASEF Young Leaders Summit (ASEFYLS) is a go-to place for Asian and European young professionals and students to unlearn and re-learn new concepts, strategies and actions on how to create sustainable impact in society. ASEFYLS is an experiental platform which adapts a 360° approach on leadership development. The project recognises that leadership takes place across all spectrums in society: at home, in lecture halls, board rooms, political plenaries, within the community and on the streets. ASEFYLS is the official youth event back-to-back with ASEM Summits. 

Education Policy

ASEF Regional Conference on Higher Education (ARC)
The ASEF Regional Conference on Higher Education (ARC) is the Official Dialogue Partner of the ASEM Education Ministers Meeting (ASEMME) and the only bi-regional multi-stakeholder dialogue platform for university and student leaders, policy makers and ministers to discuss higher education issues and shape the education landscape in Asia and Europe. Past editions of ARC have brought together over 746 university, student and thought leaders representing 423 organisations from 51 Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) countries to discuss emerging higher education issues concerning both regions and to inform ASEM policy makers.

ASEF Higher Education Innovation Lab (ASEFInnoLab)
ASEFInnoLab is a learning and networking experience for experts in higher education to share good practices and drive innovation in tertiary education with a focus on science and technology. The aim is to enhance innovation in higher education institutions and initiate Asia-Europe collaboration in innovation


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Check out our Medium blog and read what our participants have to say about education policy, teaching & learning in the digital era, and what matters to the youth!

Visit our ASEF Classroom Network website and our ASEF Regional Conference on Higher Education (ARC) website!

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Meet the Team behind ASEF's Education Department!


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