ASEF Summer University

Description of the Project

The ASEF Summer University (ASEFSU) is a 2-week experiential 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. These solutions range from design mock-ups of architectural solutions to technological innovations, policy and strategy briefs to practical project proposals, promotional videos to communication plans, and more. The outcomes of the ASEFSU project are presented at high-level ASEM meetings and thematic conferences as input to the deliberations of policy makers and for possible implementation by practitioners.

ASEFSU takes place on an annual basis, each year tackling a different theme of socio-political concern within Asia and Europe. ASEFSU makes a positive impact within ASEM societies as it offers tangible results and daring proposals for innovation, and promotes sustainable development.

Aims and objectives

  • 2-week experiential learning journey and “interdisciplinary innovation” for ASEM students & young professionals
  • Promotion of youth perspectives and solutions on pressing societal issues, practically contributing to the ASEM process, national agendas from Asian and European countries, the UN Sustainable Development Goals and society at large

ASEM Partners and Stakeholders involved

ASEF as main organiser, supported by ASEM partners and stakeholders

Progress and achievements

  • 22 Editions of the ASEF Summer University have been organised
  • 21st ASEF Summer University (ASEFSU21) on “Youth with Disabilities: Shaping Inclusive ASEM Societies” (27 January-10 February, Australia and New Zealand)
    • 48 participants from 48 ASEM countries
    • Organisation of innovathon with 8 solutions proposed to solve case studies/challenges that youth with disability face
    • ASEM-wide perception survey on youth with disabilities with 5,028 respondents
    • Video and photo productions on theme for ASEM visibility and promotion of theme
    • For a comprehensive overview of results, visit the ASEFSU21 project page.
  • 22nd ASEF Summer University (ASEFSU22) on “Green Economies: Creating Employment Opportunities for the Youth through Sustainable Tourism” (10-23 September 2018, Croatia and Slovenia)
    • 47 participants from 46 ASEM countries
    • Organisation of innovation with 8 solutions proposed to solve business case on sustainable tourism
    • ASEM-wide perception survey on sustainable tourism with 13,086 respondents
    • Video and photo productions on theme for ASEM visibility and promotion of theme
    • For a comprehensive overview of results, visit the ASEFSU22 project page.


Overall Project ongoing

Plans and expected outcomes

ASEMME7: Chair’s Conclusion 37

  • Planned 23rd ASEF Summer University (ASEFSU23) in South Asia and Singapore, early 2020, focus on “Developing Liveable & Sustainable Metropolitan Areas
  • Planned 24th ASEF Summer University (ASEFSU24) in August 2020 in Finland, Norway and Sweden, focus on “The Arctic: Asia & Europe Cooperation on People, Trade and the Environment”

The Project contributes to: