Strategic and inclusive partnership is a fundamental component to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

SEI Asia, with support from the Swedish government (SIDA), launched the Strategic Collaborative Fund Phase 2 (SCF2) programme in 2018 to enhance the current 2030 Agenda efforts in Asia and the Pacific. SCF2 aims to foster regional cooperation and policy dialogue for sustainable development and environmental sustainability, through capacity building, knowledge sharing and increased collaboration.

Human rights and gender equality are central to SCF2, as it champions regional and inter-regional collaboration for transboundary environmental policy development.


From 2018 to 2022, SCF2 will create long-term partnerships to enhance policy development and institutional capacity building in Asia, under the framework of regional integration and the SDGs. It will hold strategic events that seek to build more effective regional policies that contribute to SDG achievement.


Component 1: Inter-regional cooperation with China and Europe

Improving cooperation between ASEAN, China, and Europe is key in trade expansion and greater multilateral understanding.

SCF2 is using the China-ASEAN Environment Cooperation Forum (CAECF) and the Asia-Europe Environment Forum (ASEF) as platforms to facilitate policy dialogues and knowledge exchange between ASEAN, China and Europe to address regional sustainability.

Component 2: Regional cooperation within Asia-Pacific

SCF2 supports the ASEAN in increasing regional collaboration on key transboundary environmental issues, such as pollution, water governance, energy flows, natural resource use efficiency and climate change.

The project will provide support for initiating, organizing, and hosting events that highlight key issues that are linked to the 2030 sustainable development agenda. The goal is to build regional capacity to lead efforts toward collaborative policy development.

Component 3: Learning and capacity development

SCF2 will develop open online courses on gender equality and rights-based approaches to enhance institutional capacity and knowledge of regional partners. The courses aim to encourage gender, human rights and poverty reduction-centric policies on environmental and climate change issues and the SDGs.

Component 4: Programme management

SCF2 aims to improve project management through enhanced programme monitoring and evaluation and strategic communication. Partners will be assisted in identifying target policies and tracking new knowledge application in policy formulation.

This component will also support the institutionalization of gender and rights-based approaches into partners and participants’ current and future programmes and operations, as well as encourage improved efforts toward SDG and Agenda 2030 achievement.

Video: SEI / YouTube .

What we do

SCF2 aims to foster regional cooperation and policy dialogue for sustainable development and environmental sustainability, through capacity building, knowledge sharing and increased collaboration.

Human rights and gender equality are central to SCF2, as it champions regional and inter-regional collaboration for transboundary environmental policy development.

SCF2 is calling for concept notes from the past and present grantees that could bring innovative approaches to meaningfully engage the marginalized and vulnerable communities into regional policy processes surrounding environmental and climate change issues in Asia.

What we seek

SCF2 welcomes concept notes for regional policy dialogue in Asia, that highlight the advancement of environmental sustainability, gender equality, human rights and poverty reduction.

The proposed events should include representatives from government, private sector, civil society, research or academic institutions and development partners to ensure an inclusive and substantive dialogue.

Based on specific contexts, SCF2-supported events should benefit the Asian region, particularly marginalized groups including those living in poverty, women, youth, children, ethnic minorities and other environmentally vulnerable groups.


  1. Rethinking climate adaptation and mitigation through gender transformative approaches and amplifying local agency. Applications open from 19 September – 21 October 2022.

Grant value 

A maximum of SEK 450,000 (approximately USD 45,000) will be awarded for this grant. The grant can fund one or more events in their entirety or provide supplemental funding to already confirmed co-funded event(s).

The delivery period of event organization and impact monitoring must be within April 2023, in which the latest event should be held no later than late March 2023 to allow for final report preparation.

Who can apply      

The following can apply for the grant:

  1. Nonprofit organizations or networks that based in Asia can apply. Organizations outside the region can be considered if the proposed event addresses issues relevant to Asia and can engage regional stakeholders. They should:
    – Have experience in hosting relevant policy dialogues that engage different groups and stakeholders.
    – Feature key speakers and participants who are able to share knowledge and experience in environmental sustainability, while addressing cross-cutting issues of gender equality, human rights and poverty.
  2. Private sector players can apply, if their proposal seeks to engage with the public sector and/or civil society organizations. Funding cannot be used for covering private sector actors’ participation in the supported event (related travel and accommodation expenses). It should, however, be used to increase participation of other stakeholders such as civil society and the public sector. A cost-sharing option for micro and small enterprises with resource constraints can be considered.
  3. Government agencies that have mandates, expertise and capacities in thematic areas are encouraged to apply in partnership with other organizations.
  4. Organizations that are currently Sida’s grantees are not eligible to apply as the lead organization, but can be part of the consortium.

Selection criteria

The concept notes should:

  • Provide evidence of regional-level outreach and scope in the Asia region (South and Southeast Asia), as opposed to a country-level event
  • Address the thematic focus and relevance to environmentally sustainable and inclusive development
  • Demonstrate how the event leads to positive impact on gender equality, rights-based approaches and poverty reduction
  • Demonstrate how the event would target and benefit the citizens of the region, with particular attention to the poor, women and other marginalized groups
  • Ensure diverse participation including the public sector, private sector, civil society organizations, research and academic institutions and development partners
  • Use innovative methods and technologies to enhance participation and active discussion among participants
  • Show proponents’ institutional capacity for organizing regional events
  • Demonstrate the linkage between the regional event’s expected outcomes and regional policy engagement (i.e. SEI Asia’s strategy and Sida’s regional strategy )

Guidance note on human rights and gender equality

Human rights and gender equality are central to SCF, as it champions regional and inter-regional cooperation for transboundary environmental policy development. Based on specific contexts, SCF-supported events should benefit the Asia-Pacific region, particularly marginalized groups including those living in poverty, women, youth, children, migrants, ethnic minorities and other environmentally vulnerable groups.

SEI and the Raoul Wallenberg Institute (RWI) are jointly supporting the integration of gender equality and human rights into the SCF2 programme, including through coaching and support of grantees.

This guidance note aims to support applicants to integrate human rights and gender equality in the design of their SCF2 project proposals.


All concept notes must be submitted via this online form by Friday, 21 October 2022 (11.59 BKK time). Please use our concept note template to make the submission. Kindly note that proposals that are submitted via email or in another template will not be considered.

To assist you in designing the proposed event, please refer to our guidance notes on integrating gender and HRBA and MEL .

All queries regarding this call shall be addressed to scf@sei.org. This includes requests for getting connected with the other partners to co-develop the concept note(s).

SCF announces partners for 2022 regional events

SEI’s Strategic Collaborative Fund programme has selected organizations who will host regional environmental policy forums in 2022 on five key themes: disaster risk reduction, agri-food systems, circular economy, gender, and water resources management.

Each partner will receive the financial support up to SEK 450 000 (approximately $45 000) and technical guidance on the planning and implementation process of one or a series of events that will help advance solutions on environmental sustainability, gender equality, human rights, and poverty reduction.

The following regional events will be conducted (virtually or in-person depending on the location) starting April until September 2022:

Manila Observatory

Inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction in the context of COVID-19 and the climate crisis (Theme: Climate Change Adaption and Disaster Risk Reduction)


Climate-resilient practices to promote inclusive and sustainable agricultural systems and value chains (Theme: Agri-food systems)

Yunus Foundation in Thailand

Closing the loop: circular waste management in Asia’s cities (Theme: Circular economy)

National University of Laos

Improving water resources management and climate resilience by integrating socio-ecological systems thinking (Theme: Ecosystems)

For more information on these upcoming events, please check out the SCF events page.


Events and Themes


29 September – 1 October Building a Sustainable and Inclusive Agriculture System – Together towards a Zero Exclusion, Zero Carbon, Zero Poverty Southeast Asia

(Theme: Agri-food systems)

TBC Democratizing and re-Indigenizing Water Resources Management and Climate Resilience in the Lower Mekong River Basin

(Theme: Circular economy)

National University of Laos
6 October Loss and Damage Financing in Southeast Asia: Current issues and ways forward Webinar

(Theme: Disaster Risk Reduction)

Manila Observatory
11 October Raising Equitable and Sustainable Finance: Understanding sustainable finance taxonomy AVPN
17 – 21 October Policy Dialogues for Climate Resiliency of Asian Family Farmers(Theme: Partnerships for Climate-Resilience Pathways in Asia) Asian Farmers Association


24 – 25 October ENVForum Spin-Off Conference Circular Industry: Innovation and Digitization as Enablers for SMEs Asia-Europe Foundation



Events and Themes



23 September Waste Hero Alliance: Waste Workers & Youth Together for inclusive Circular Cities

77th United Nations General Assembly High Level Side Event for Social Business, Youth and Technology

(Theme: Ecosystems)

Yunus Foundation
15 – 16 September ASEAN-China Environmental Cooperation Forum Foreign Economic Cooperation Office (FECO) Ministry of Ecology and Environment, China
22-25 August Making Sense of and Responding to Loss and Damage in Southeast Asia

Field Visits to Bohol, community-led workshop on loss and damage

(Theme: Disaster Risk Reduction)

Manila Observatory
28 – 29 June 2022
 ENVforum Annual Conference 2022 – SMEs Going Circular: Decarbonisation of Food Supply Chains Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF)
22 – 24 June  2022  

ASEAN-China Environmental Cooperation Week 2022  


Foreign Economic Cooperation Office (FECO), Ministry of Ecology and Environment, China
21 – 22 June 2022 AVPN Global Conference on June 2022

Event Recording

Post-Event Report

31 May 2022 Centre for Finance for Sustainability Bangkok AVPN


November–December 2021

Towards Mainstreaming Ecosystem Services In National Policies For Sustainable Management Of Freshwater Ecosystems In South And Southeast Asia

(Theme: Freshwater Ecosystems)

Asian Institute of Technology
14–15 December 2021 Mekong Institute
30 November–1 December 2021 ENVforum Annual Conference 2021 – The Future of Food


Asia-Europe Foundation
23–25 November 2021 Clean Air Initiative for Asian Cities (CAI-Asia) Center, Inc.
15–19 November 2021 Institute for Circular Economy Development (ICED), Vietnam National University
24–26 October 2021 The Foreign Economic Cooperation Office (FECO) of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment,  China
29–30 April 2021
(Theme: Disaster Risk Reduction)
Children and Youth International (CYI)
2, 9, 20 April 2021
(Theme: Climate Change Adaptation)
The University of Auckland


4 December 2020 Sustainable Business Awards Global Initiatives
24–26 November 2020 Grounding and Empowering: Nourishing the Grassroots for Transformative Change An Asia Women Environmental Defenders Retreat

(Theme: Gender)

Non-Timber Forest Products
9–11 November 2020 Asia-Europe Environment Forum (ENVforum) 2020

(Theme: Connecting the Dots: Creating an Enabling Environment for SDG 12 in ASEM)

Asia-Europe Foundation
4, 11, 18, 25 November 2020 IPEN-SEA Virtual Conference 2020: Citizen Science in Southeast and East Asia

(Theme: Prevent and Reduce Urban Pollution from Toxic Chemicals)

EcoWaste Coalition Philippines
2–3 November 2020 Women, Water, Climate: Tackling the Challenges

(Theme: Water)

Women for Water Partnership (WfWP)
6–7 October 2020 Making Family Farming Sustainable and Viable in Asia: Strengthening Farmer-Led Multi Actor Partnership Platforms for Family Farming

(Theme: Agriculture)

Asian Farmers Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA)
8–12 June 2020 The Climate Finance Track at the AVPN 2020 Virtual Conference

(Theme: Climate Finance)

Asian Venture Philanthropy Network Limited
21–22 January 2020 Regional Dialogue Workshop on Green and Sustainable Agriculture

(Theme: Agriculture)

Department of Policy and Legal Affairs, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Laos


2–4 December 2019 Climate Smart Women Connect: Climate and Gender Justice for Indigenous Women in Asia

(Theme: Gender)

CUSO International
18–19 November 2019 Responsible Business Forum

(Theme: Circularity 2030: Next generation leaders)

Global Initiatives
29 October 2019 Roundtable on the Environment and Social Inclusion  Global Initiatives
27–30 October 2019 9th Southeast Asian Human Rights and Business Conference

(Theme: Energy)

Forest Peoples Programme
16–18 October 2019 Regional Consultation to Promote Actions to Improve Asian Deltas Resilience

(Theme: Water)

WWF Greater Mekong
13–17 October 2019 Grassroots Community Resilience at the Asia-Pacific Urban Forum 7 (APUF-7)

(Theme: Disaster Risk Reduction)

Asia Coalition for Housing Rights
8–9 October 2019 Challenges and Opportunities on Indigenous Knowledge System and Practices and Rights-Based Sustainable Development: A Southeast Asian Forum

(Theme: Climate Change Adaptation)

Samdhana Institute
17–18 September 2019 China ASEAN Environmental Cooperation Forum

(Theme: Promote and Foster Regional Green Growth: Best Practices for Eco-city Development and Sustainable Ocean Ecosystem Management)

Center for International Cooperation and Exchange, Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) of the People’s Republic of China
29–30 July 2019 Asia-Europe Environment Forum (ENVforum) Annual Conference

(Theme: The Role of Consumer in Triggering Changes in Consumption & Production)


Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF)

Online courses

The integration of human rights and gender equality is central to the SCF2, as it champions regional and inter-regional collaboration for transboundary environmental policy development. 

Through a collaboration with Raoul Wallenberg Institute (RWI) and Stockholm Environment Institute Asia gender cluster, evidence-based human rights and gender equality approaches are integrated into the programme implementation through capacity building such as direct coaching and providing open online courses.  

 This ensures that human rights and gender equality become central to regional environmental and climate change policy with the intent of achieving SDG integration. 

Course 1: Rights-based approaches to environmental sustainability

Image: SEI

Course 2: Gender, Environment and Sustainable Development

Image: SEI

Guidance notes

These guidance notes support grantees to integrate human rights and gender equality, and monitoring, evaluation and learning in all steps of their events.