Mekong - U.S. Partnership Young Scientist Program

About the Program

Funded by the US. State Department between 2018 - 2022, the goal of the Mekong - U.S. Partnership Young Scientist Program was to foster collaboration, knowledge sharing and the creation of a network of young scientists in the Mekong - U.S. Partnership countries: Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.

As implementing partners of this program, Arizona State University (ASU) leveraged its decades of experience in sponsored project implementation in Southeast Asia through the Higher Engineering Education Alliance Program (HEEAP); the Building University-Industry Learning and Development through Innovation and Technology (BUILD-IT) and the Young Southeast Asia Leaders Initiative (YSEALI).

The program supported youth and young professionals by creating opportunities for collaboration. Joint research, workshops and symposiums encouraged the sharing of scientific knowledge, ideas and experience, including authorship of peer-reviewed research papers. The program had two objectives: to foster and promote scientific collaboration within the region, and to promote knowledge sharing on science and technology best practices and research ideas.

Program Activities

The program supported the goals of creating a scientific research community of young scholars in the Mekong - U.S. Partnership member countries with the following activities:


Icon  4-Week Thematic Placement Program

ASU hosted the 4-week placement program during the summer of each year, at a partner institution in a different Mekong - U.S. Partnership country. The program delivered skill-building workshops, allowing participants to apply skills learned toward research initiatives and new technology development. The Mekong - U.S. Partnership Young Scientist Program is the first step in the participants' journey.

Icon  Annual Scientific Symposium

During the fourth quarter of each year, the Mekong - U.S. Partnership young scientists were invited to participate in a two-day symposium that included guest speakers and networking opportunities. A poster session was held, allowing the country teams to showcase their projects and collect additional feedback from guests of academia, industry, government, and non-profit organizations; formal research proposals were developed from this input. Each year the symposium was hosted in a different country.

Icon  Competition for Seed Funds

Each year, the program organized an annual competition where participants were invited to submit their project proposals before a reviewing committee for a chance to receive $15,000 in seed funding to implement their projects. Proposals were selected for funding based on feasibility, innovation, impact, and replicability. 

Year Institute Theme Program Host Country Scientific Symposium
2018 Water, Energy and Environmental Sustainability


2019 Public Health and Bioinformatics Lao PDR Myanmar
2020 - 2021 The program was put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. - -
2022 Agricultural Technology and Innovation Vietnam N/A



Thank you to our partners:

US FlagState Department LogoHCMUTESchool LogoSchool LogoWiley Logo


2022 Mekong - U.S. Partnership Agritech Hybrid Incubator Program

Using Lean Startup and Strategic Innovation methods and tools to create commercial value in the agricultural technology (Agritech) sector.

Program Dates:

Online component: June 6 – 27, 2022

In-person component (Tentative): July 11 – 15, 2022 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Application Deadline: 

March 31, 2022