Application Form to 2019 Young Leaders Program

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The Northeast Asia Economic Forum (NEAEF), with support from the Freeman Foundation, has been conducting its annual Young Leaders Training and Research Program in Regional Cooperation and Development since 2006. NEAEF is pleased to announce its 14th Young Leaders Program (YLP) from July 28 – August 11, 2019 in Incheon, Korea. These dates do not include travel time. 

Online Application Form can be found below.

For more information about the previous YLP, you may visit our YLP webpage:


NEAEF awards YLP fellowships to support potential leaders working on the challenges and progress in regional economic cooperation in Northeast Asia, including the region’s relations with the United States. Awards are granted on a merit-based and competitive basis. NEAEF welcomes applications from young professionals, junior faculty members, postdoctoral researchers, and graduate students pursuing advanced degrees in economics, business, history, law, sociology, anthropology, environmental sciences, computer science, or related disciplines.

The main goals of the Young Leaders Program are to:

  • Enhance knowledge of the social, economic, and political institutions of the individual countries in Northeast Asia and North America;
  • Encourage young leaders to study a wide range of perspectives on regional and multilateral economic cooperation;
  • Foster a sense of community among young leaders by preparing them to work collaboratively and internationally;
  • Provide young leaders with practical education in policy making through opportunities for direct dialogues with policymakers and other experts; and
  • Promote a better understanding among young leaders of individuals, countries, and cultures.

YLP consists of seminars devoted to regional issues of functional economic cooperation such as energy and environment, transportation and logistics, cross-border infrastructure development, trade, tourism, finance, and natural disasters. Those seminars prepare the YLP Fellows for the annual NEAEF Conference from August 8-10.

In addition, YLP offers a series of collaborative problem-solving exercises, participant presentations, and cultural and educational events dedicated to the host country. Such activities may include visits to educational or research institutions, local government agencies, NGOs, manufacturers, or relevant sites in order to promote appreciation of the host country’s role in regional cooperation and development.

An international faculty of leading academics, representatives of international organizations, government officials, parliamentarians, and executives from the private sector will lead or assist the seminars and collaborative exercises.


YLP Fellowships are awarded to individuals from China, Japan, Korea, Mongolia, the Russian Federation, and the United States who have demonstrated potential leadership. Applicants must be affiliated with an academic, research, or business institution or a non-governmental, governmental, or international organization when applying for the fellowship. Recent post-doctoral researchers or post-graduate students are eligible. People from Northeast Asia who are studying or working in the United States may also apply, as may U.S. citizens studying or working abroad.

As all seminars and collaborative exercises are conducted in English, candidates must be proficient in English. Participants from the U.S. must have at least a basic proficiency level in one Northeast Asian language.

Exceptional consideration may be given to applications from past recipients in order to maintain the continuity of the evolving YLP cadre.


The award is a competitive grant and may cover all program-related expenses, including visa application, travel, local transfer, accommodation, meals, study tours, training, and materials. Cost sharing is highly encouraged to increase the number of participants. Limited amounts of other YLP-related expenses may be reimbursed on a case-by-case basis.  YLP Fellows are responsible for obtaining their Korean visas, if required, and providing evidence of medical and liability insurance to NEAEF. Participation for the entire duration of the program is required. No exceptions will be made.


Applicants are required to fill out online application below and atttach the following documents by May 4, 2019:

1. A cover letter, which includes

  • ​Specific motivation(s) for applying
  • Research interest(s)
  • Benefits expected from YLP

2. Curriculum vitae

3. Two letters of recommendation [if to follow, please send recommendation letters to]

If you do not receive a reply acknowledging receipt of your application, the application may not have been transmitted properly. In this case, please send an email to to check on the status of your application.