Experiential Professional Development (XPD)


The East-West Center's Experiential Professional Development (XPD) designs, facilitates, and evaluates innovative, non-residential, experiential programs in partnership with dozens of Universities, non-profit and for profit organizations, and U.S. Embassies across Asia and the Americas including the Innovation for Sustainable Development Fellowship (#EWCinnovationfellows), EWC Teaching Fellows Program (#EWCteachingfellows), EWC Ocean Corps for early career ocean researchers (#EWCoceancorps), EWC Innovation Challenges on various themes (eg. circular economy), and an annual EWC environmental awards program. XPD also offers the bi-annual, residential and virtual YSEALI Academic Fellowship on Environmental Issues for Natural Resource Managers (#EWCinrm) with eleven (11) U.S. Embassies and the University of Montana for the U.S. Department of State’s signature program for leadership development in Southeast Asia, the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (#YSEALI). Learn about our impact in the 2020 XPD Impact Report

XPD Non-Residential Fellowships
The EWC Innovation for Sustainable Development Fellows 
(#EWCinnovationfellows) is a ten (10) year opportunity to support EWC alumni striving to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Non-resident Fellows co-design and co-deliver innovation initiatives for the EWC within their organization or company. Fellows are young professionals and EWC Alumni (under age 40) in the arts, environment, education, health, and disaster resilience sectors supported in five (5) modules delivered virtually over the course of five (5) months. 

Our Theory of Change is that the EWC can advance sustainable development in Asia IF we offer five (5) months of customized support and financial incentives to young professional EWC alumni (under age 40) in the arts, environment, education, health, and disaster resilience sectors as non-resident Innovation for Sustainable Development Fellows (#EWC innovationfellows) to implement innovation strategies within their University, organization or company THEN Fellows will improve their capacity to design, deliver, and evaluate innovation strategies that meet the UN SDG targets strategies THEN citizens of fellows' targeted program area will acquire knowledge and services in arts, education, environment, disaster resilience, and health sector and improve their well-being and livelihoods. 

Photo Credit: Irwan Hermawan

The EWC Ocean Research Corps (#EWCoceancorps) responds to UNESCO’s call to “change how we finance and conduct ocean research” by training 100 young researchers in 100 different communities across Southeast Asia for the Ocean Decade. Researchers are YSEALI members and Early Career Ocean Professionals (less than 10 year's experience) on ten-month, non-residential EWC research intern posts. We ask partners such as Blue Communities Network and Perhentian Marine Research Station prioritize women and others underrepresented in the ocean sciences using innovative methods or topics. Corps researchers must be embedded in their local communities and organizations and affiliated with a local University, NGO, or business. Upon completion, each will become official co-founders of the initiative shaping the evolution of the program's initiatives and contributions to the Ocean Decade including supporting the programming, recruitment, and training of other EWC research interns for the duration of the Ocean Decade.  


XPD Residential Fellowships in Hawaii

Currently the Center offers two (2) annual Institutes on Environmental Issues for undergraduate and recent graduates from Southeast Asia. The Institutes run in partnership with the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI), eleven (11) US Embassies who select all fellows, our implementation partner the University of Montana Mansfield Center, and with the U.S. Department of State.

Cohorts of 21 fellows whose average age is 21 complete a 21 week curriculum with 21 books to read. Some current books include: The Synthetic Age, Clean Meat, Leading from the Roots, A Bright Future, A New Climate Story, California Greenin', and Factfulness.  Five (5) weeks are spent together in Hawaii, North and Central California, Yosemite National Park, and Washington D.C. 

The Institutes also use experiential methods to train fellows capable of designing and facilitating innovation challenges, accelerator programs, health campaigns, and arts and media initiatives with community partners in their home countries. Upon completion, fellows are eligible to work with the Center as EWC Innovation Fellows. 

The East-West Center has also hosted Institutes on Environmental Issues Global Cohorts (Brazil, China, Japan, Russia, Turkey) and Institutes on Environmental Issues Middle East Cohorts (Jordan, Palestinian Territories).