The Asia Foundation is a nonprofit international development organization committed to improving lives across a dynamic and developing Asia. Informed by six decades of experience and deep local expertise, their programs address critical issues affecting Asia in the 21st century—governance and law, economic development, women's empowerment, environment, and regional cooperation. In addition, their Books for Asia and professional exchange programs are among the ways they encourage Asia's continued development as a peaceful, just, and thriving region of the world.
Headquartered in San Francisco, The Asia Foundation works through a network of offices in 18 Asian countries and in Washington, DC. Working with public and private partners, the Foundation receives funding from a diverse group of bilateral and multilateral development agencies, foundations, corporations, and individuals. In 2014, they provided more than $108 million in direct program support and distributed textbooks and other educational materials valued at over $11 million.
AMERICA'S ROLE IN ASIA
Every four years, America's Role in Asia brings together a distinguished group of Asian and American policy experts, current and former diplomats, and scholars to develop recommendations for U.S. policy toward Asia. The program reflects The Asia Foundation's view that if workable solutions to common problems are to be found, perspectives from both sides of the Pacific must be heard and shared.
BOOKS FOR ASIA
Books change lives. They're getting brand new texts to students in vulnerable regions of Asia, including Pakistan's North West Frontier Province (newly named Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa), where university libraries were devastated by flooding. Books help shape people's imaginations, critical thinking skills, and their understanding of the world. Books for Asia puts one million brand-new books into the hands of students and teachers in 18 countries every year. They know an educated population is better equipped to fight poverty, disease, injustice, and instability. Through their offices in Asia, they identify and donate directly to libraries, schools, and universities in need.
CENTER FOR U.S.-KOREA POLICY
The Center for U.S.-Korea Policy aims to deepen and broaden the foundations for institutionalized cooperation between the United States and South Korea by promoting bilateral policy coordination. A project of The Asia Foundation, the Center is based in the Foundation's Washington DC office. The Center supports the Foundation's commitment to the development of the Asia Pacific by supporting a comprehensive U.S.-ROK alliance partnership on emerging global, regional, and non-traditional security challenges
CONFLICT AND FRAGILE CONDITIONS
Violent conflict and fragile governance present enormous challenges for development and security in Asia. In places where violence is widespread and government ceases to function, the pace of development falls dramatically and conditions can deteriorate to extreme levels. The Asia Foundation has a long history of programs in conflict-affected and fragile regions of Asia.
ECONOMIC REFORM & DEVELOPMENT
The Asia Foundation's Economic Reform and Development programs support Asian initiatives that enhance economic governance aimed at accelerating and sustaining broad-based economic growth. Based on decades of experience, the Foundation focuses on reform of the regulatory and structural constraints to investment, enterprise, and participation. The Asia Foundation promotes open and inclusive economic governance not only within countries but also across economies.
The Asia Foundation has a long history of supporting programs that encourage free and fair elections throughout Asia as a means for advancing broader democratic goals, for building capacity of key electoral institutions to carry out free and fair elections, and for building commitment to development enhancing reforms.
The Asia Foundation works with local partners to improve environmental stewardship, economic development, and human health by building capacity for public participation; involving a broad range of stakeholders in adopting environmental management approaches that respect ecosystems; and strengthening Asia’s environmental cooperation with the global community.
Through its Asian-American Exchange unit, The Asia Foundation seeks to encourage greater understanding between Asians and Americans with the ultimate aim of contributing towards strengthened U.S.-Asia relations. Over the past five decades, Foundation grants have provided thousands of participants with opportunities to exchange views and gain direct experience with regions other than their own.
The Asia Foundation’s Governance programs support local initiatives aimed at strengthening the effectiveness and responsiveness of governance in Asian countries.
For more than half a century, The Asia Foundation’s International Relations programs has served as a trusted, independent bridge between the United States and Asia. The goal of the Foundation’s International Relations work is to foster greater understanding and dialogue between the United States and Asia in the effort to promote a peaceful, prosperous, just, and open Asia-Pacific region.
People across Asia face systemic challenges in resolving their disputes; enforcing their rights; and accessing the benefits to which they are legally entitled. To address these problems, the Asia Foundation’s law programs support Asian efforts to protect the legal rights of vulnerable groups; strengthen dispute resolution processes; and reform dysfunctional laws, policies, institutions, and practices.
PARTNERS IN ASIAN DEVELOPMENT
The Asia Foundation’s Partnership for Asian Development (PAD) initiative contributes to deepening the impact of public Official Development Assistance in Asia, and supports private Asian philanthropy aimed at economic and social development in the region.
Their office in the U.S. capital organizes substantive dialogues with key audiences on policy issues facing the Asia-Pacific. Roundtables, forums, lectures, and conversations provide policymakers, non-governmental officials, journalists, and scholars with contemporary views from Asia and on-the-ground information: The Asian Perspective Series, the Ellsworth Bunker Asian Ambassadors Series, and the Emerging Issues Series.
WOMEN'S EMPOWERMENT PROGRAM
For more than half a century, The Asia Foundation has been a leader in helping women to realize their potential. They believe that investing in women fundamentally strengthens families and societies. Their Women's Empowerment Program develops women's leadership, strengthens women's organizations, increases women's rights and ensures their personal security, and creates new political and economic opportunities for women across the Asia-Pacific region.
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