Young Leaders Program

Part of the: 
Pacific Forum CSIS

The Young Leaders Program serves as a catalyst for training young professionals in international policy affairs at an early juncture in their careers.

Watch the video from the 2014 Board of Governors Dinner, celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Young Leaders Program

The Young Leaders Program serves as a catalyst for training young professionals in international policy affairs at an early juncture in their careers.

The Young Leaders Program at Pacific Forum CSIS selects up-and-coming young professionals and post-graduate students to participate in a series of Pacific Forum policy dialogues and conferences, which are normally limited to seasoned experts. The program serves as a catalyst for training young professionals in international policy affairs at an early juncture in their careers, while also giving greater voice to the younger generation’s viewpoints within the elite circles of policy specialists. Once selected as a Young Leader, you will typically travel internationally to a Pacific Forum CSIS dialogue (three to five days) at least twice a year.

The Young Leaders program has six primary objectives: 

  • To foster education in the practical aspects and complexities of policy-making;
  • To generate a greater exchange of views between young and seasoned professionals;
  • To promote cross-cultural interaction and cooperation among younger professionals;
  • To enrich dialogues with generational perspectives for the benefit of all attendees;
  • To fully leverage next generation intellectual and social capital; and
  • To build adaptive leadership capacity among younger professionals across relevant, but diverse, international relations sectors.

Program Description

Each Young Leader event begins with a pre-conference introductory session, where Young Leaders become acquainted with each other and with the program. Recently, the Young Leaders Program has expanded to include a full day of meetings by the host organization to gain insight into local views of security issues and to gain familiarity with local political and security institutions.

During the conference, Young Leaders are encouraged to participate and contribute views, and Pacific Forum senior staff encourages sidebar interactions with senior experts. Each Young Leader is required to write a brief position paper on a topic dealt with in the meeting, which is critiqued at the Young Leaders Seminar.

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