Project Period:February – November 2021

Venue:Virtual, Cambodia & ASEM Countries

Contact:Freya CHOW-PAUL

How can YOUth shape Sustainable Development in a post-COVID-19 world?

Be an ASEM Young Leader!


The ASEF Young Leaders Summit (ASEFYLS) is ASEM‘s official Youth platform that connects young people with the Heads of States and Governments from 51 Asian & European countries and the political Leaders of the EU & the ASEAN Secretariat.

The 4th ASEF Young Leaders Summit (ASEFYLS4) is a fully-funded 10-month long youth leadership programme connected to the 13th ASEM Summit (ASEM13) in June 2021 in Cambodia. The ASEFYLS4 focuses on ‘Sustainable Development in a post-COVID-19 World’ and incorporates 3 spheres for youth leadership: 1) self-leadership (you), 2) team leadership (we) and 3) societal leadership (all).

The 4th edition is a hybrid project with collaborative elements taking place virtually, in Cambodia, as well as across ASEM countries. We address 4 thematic areas:

  1. SDG3: Good Health & Wellbeing – Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages
  2. SDG4: Quality Education – Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all
  3. SDG8: Decent Work & Economic Growth – Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all
  4. SDG13: Climate Action – Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

ASEFYLS4 is preceded by a virtual ASEFYLS4 Navigators Training, which served as a springboard and capacity building opportunity for youth facilitators who will guide the ASEFYLS4 participants.

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The ASEFYLS4 programme consists of 3 phases:

  1. Knowledge Building: Monday, 22 February 2021 – 28 May 2021, Virtual
    We invite youth to an in-depth knowledge journey and peer-to-peer exploration into Asia-Europe Relations, the Sustainable Development Goals and Leadership with a certified course and training led by the College of Europe in Natolin and the Center for Creative Leadership respectively. Besides focus group discussions & youth collaboration, the highlights of this phase will be Youth Dialogues with ASEM Heads of States and Governments led by ASEFYLS4 representatives. See the programme for more details.
  2. Youth Summit: Saturday, 29 May 2021 – Wednesday, 2 June 2021, Cambodia/Virtual
    The virtual or hybrid Youth Summit will take place in conjunction with the 13th ASEM Summit in Cambodia, pending local and international public health & safety guidelines, as well as travel recommendations.
    Youth will have the opportunity to deepen their networks and conversations, and also prepare an ASEM Youth Declaration that will be presented by ASEFYLS4 participants at the Opening Ceremony of the 13th ASEM Summit to the ASEM Leaders. Engagement with ASEM Leaders and their Delegations are planned.
  3. Leadership in Action: June – November 2021, Virtual & in local ASEM communities
    During this phase, participants will turn theory into action, and jointly work on 15 impactful, community projects on the Sustainable Development Goals across ASEM. See here for more details on the projects.

The 4th ASEF Young Leaders Summit is accessible to all ASEM youth. For more details see the Overview and Frequently Asked Questions.


  1. Receive a certified course/training by world-leading institutions on Asia-Europe relations and the Sustainable Development Goals, as well as Leadership!
  2. Have the rare chance to interact with ASEM Heads of States and Governments to present the youth voice and even have the once-in-a lifetime opportunity to moderate a Youth Dialogue with an ASEM Head of State or Government!
  3. Bring the youth voice into the multilateral policy arena and contribute to the ASEM Process. Be part of and even featured in the ASEM-wide Youth Leadership Report and have your perspectives reflected in the ASEM Youth Declaration, that will be presented to the ASEM Leaders at the 13th ASEM Summit Opening Ceremony!
  4. Leave a positive mark in local communities across Asia and Europe and bring in your enthusiasm, knowledge and skills to 15 ASEFYLS4 Leadership in Action projects on the SDGs!
  5. Have access to and become a member of the ASEM & ASEF youth community opening doors for cross-regional collaboration and exchange.

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Deadline: Wednesday, 3 February 2021, GMT 23:59

We are thrilled you are interested in joining the 4th ASEF Young Leaders Summit (ASEFYLS4), the official youth event of the 13th ASEM Summit (ASEM13) – which will bring together the Heads of States and Leaders of 53 ASEM Partners. 

In this application, we would like to find out more about your personal and professional background, your motivation to join and your possible contribution to the ASEFYLS4. We also want to hear your views and experiences in Youth Leadership – to ensure the voice of ASEM Youth will be heard. Your perspectives will help us design a meaningful and relevant programme and also support the development of recommendations to ASEM Governments on Youth Policy. 

Please carefully read through the following details before completing the form. Filling in the application form will take about ~30 min. You can “save and resume” which allows you to come back and continue filling out the form anytime. Have your CV ready as you will be requested to upload it. 

Deadline: Wednesday, 3 February 2021, GMT 23:59 *Mandatory fields

Eligibility criteria:

  • Citizens of any of the 51 Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Partner countries
  • Students, entrepreneurs, academics and young professionals – all between the ages of 18 and 30
  • Strong verbal and written command of English

Selection criteria:
When assessing the applications, ASEF and its partners will lay extra weight on the:

  • Originality of the motivational statement
  • Contribution with knowledge and/or skills to the Leadership in Action Projects. 
  • Proven experience with and/or expressed interest in Asia-Europe relations
  • Current or past extra-curricular (and/or professional) activities that are both relevant for the overall programme and that could enrich the diversity of expertise and perspectives of the overall participant group. 


  • When & Where?
    • Programme Element 1: Knowledge Building Phase – Monday, 22 February 2021 – Friday, 28 May 2021, Virtual
    • Programme Element 2: Summit – Saturday, 29 May 2021 – Wednesday, 2 June 2021, On-site in Cambodia/Virtual*
    • Programme Element 3: Leadership in Action – June – November 2021, Virtual & in local ASEM communities
  • Costs? No registration or participation fee. The organisers will cover professional/academic training & leaderships courses for all participants, including certificates. For the selected ASEFYLS4 Summit youth representatives, the organisers will also cover the accommodation and meals for the duration of the on-site event in Cambodia*, plus a travel subsidy from your country of residence to the starting point and back. For more details please refer to the FAQ.  

*Pending public health and safety guidelines, as well as international travel recommendations

For more information please open this link

Know more:

This form has been designed to be as accessible as possible. In case you experience any difficulties filling it in, please get in touch with us.

The Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) and its partners follow the principle of equality, non-discrimination and equal opportunity. All applicants will be screened fairly as ASEF and its partners do not discriminate any applicant or participant on the basis of his or her race, national origin (ancestry), colour, gender, identity or expression, sexual orientation, pregnancy, disability, religion (creed), marital status or age.

Data Disclaimer: By filling in this application form, you consent that ASEF can keep and use your data for organisational purposes. All information collected through this form is with the purpose of assessing 4th ASEF Young Leaders Summit applications and selecting 4th ASEF Young Leaders Summit participants, as well as gathering and presenting the applicants’ anonymous views on the themes of the project. If necessary and only to fulfill the aforementioned purpose, ASEF might share the collected data with the organisers and partners of the project. ASEF and its partners will never share your data with any other, external third parties, nor use it for any other purposes than the aforementioned ones. The data collection and usage complies with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (EU GDPR) and the Singapore Personal Data Protection Act. For more information, check the ASEF Privacy Policy.

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