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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 and over 400 school collaborations have been developed. Over 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)
Participants of the ASEF Summer University (ASEFSU) joined challenge competitions (so-called Innovathons) to develop solutions for topical issues such as sustainable tourism, disabilities and inclusion, and transportation connectivity. The outcomes are presented to stakeholders in civil society and governments to provide feedback and inspiration from the youth perspective. For example, participants in the 22nd edition on sustainable tourism presented solutions to Hostelling International – one of the world’s largest networks of Youth Hostels.

Model ASEM
Past Model ASEM projects engaged students from all 51 ASEM countries. Students participate in soft skills trainings (public speaking, negotiations, etc.) and practice through role plays & simulations.

ASEF Young Leaders Summit (ASEFYLS)
Arena for debate and action on education and ethical leadership, where young professionals meet ASEM Leaders as well as thought and business leaders, to develop a vision for a sustainable future across Asia and Europe.

Both ASEFYLS and the Model ASEM are the official youth events alongside the biennial ASEM Summits and the ASEM Foreign Ministers Meetings. We facilitate personal meetings and dialogues between young people and ASEM Leaders and Foreign Ministers. Youth representatives are invited to deliver ASEM Youth Interventions at the Opening Ceremonies of both ASEM meetings.

Education Policy

ASEF Regional Conference on Higher Education
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 Education Innovation Labs (ASEF InnoLabs)
Experts’ meetings to share good practices and drive innovationin tertiary education with a focus on science and technology.


Follow ASEF's work in Education on social media


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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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