ASEF University

The ASEF University (AU) is a flagship project of the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) aimed at promoting inter-cultural exchanges among youth from Asia and Europe. Organised by the People-to-People Exchange department at ASEF, it is a two-week intensive enrichment programme that is held each year at venues alternating between Asia and Europe. The programme gives more than 40 highly qualified students and young professionals from Asia and Europe a unique opportunity to broaden their intellectual and cultural horizons in a multicultural environment. AU generally aims to have at least 1 representative from each ASEM country.The ASEF University aims to:

  • Provide a positive environment that fosters inter-cultural dialogue among university students from Asia and Europe on a broad range of issues with a view to reducing points of divergence and increasing points of convergence between the two regions
  • Inculcate in university students of Asia and Europe a better appreciation of the history, culture, economics, politics of the other region and of the current co-operation between Asia and Europe
  • Inculcate in university students of Asia and Europe a better appreciation of the history, culture, economics, politics of the other region and of the current co-operation between Asia and Europe
  • Foster the establishment of people-to-people linkages and a strong and sustainable network among top university students from Asia and Europe, who have the potential to become part of the future intellectual elite in Asia and Europe

The academic programme aims to give participants a better understanding of the history, culture, economics, politics and current social developments in Asia and Europe. In this respect, modules on developments in the ASEM process and regional integration process in both regions would be featured. In addition, modules that will provide the participants with an understanding of the perspectives from Asia and Europe on selected key global developments and trends will also be included in the programme.

Lectures at the ASEF University are given by highly regarded academics and experts from universities, research institutes, governments and international organizations from Asia and Europe.

To complement the academic programme, the ASEF University also offers a social and cultural programme, that will enable participants to experience at close quarters key aspects of the social, economic and cultural life of the host country. In this regard, the programme can involve visits to historic or cultural sites, local industries and important socio-political institutions. It may also include hands-on experience or close-encounters with local people, such as home visits, and interaction with local students or their families.

The programme of each session of the ASEF University comprises a leading theme and a main agenda, which is discussed and agreed upon by ASEF and the host university. Different discussion and meeting formats would be employed depending on the subject matter. These include lectures at plenary sessions, working group discussions facilitated by a moderator, case studies and panel discussions. The different elements of the cultural programme will be interspersed throughout the two-week programme to add greater texture and flavour to the programme.

For more information, please visit the ASEF website at


Each ASEF University can accept up to 43 outstanding undergraduates, preferably in their final year of study, from universities in the 43 member countries of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) process.

As the number of participants is limited and, insofar as this is practicable, students from different universities in each ASEM member country will be selected for each session of ASEF University. This is to maximise the the existing network of universities that are involved in the ASEF University programme. This notwithstanding, care will be taken to ensure that the high quality of the programme is maintained. Besides nominations from universities, ASEF will also consider applications and nominations submitted by individual students, partner organisations and contact groups.



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Apply for ASEF University

Please refer to the website of the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) for further details about forthcoming sessions of the programme as well as the application procedure

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