Launched in 2017, Innovation for Change – East Asia is one of seven regional hubs contributing to the defense, expansion, and creation of civic spaces and actions. Our work covers 16 countries and territories in East and Southeast Asia – Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, China, Brunei, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, Timor Leste, and Indonesia.
I4C-EA is a network of groups and individuals aiming to contribute to the building of a stronger East Asian civil society and a region respectful of human rights, freedoms, and democracy.
We achieve this by creating, developing, and expanding opportunities, capacities, and spaces towards the transformation of effective and impactful civil societies in the region. We work under the principles of co-creation and innovation – learning from and listening to our communities and partners to guide us in defending, expanding, and creating civic spaces in East Asia.
The I4C-EA Hub’s efforts are guided by a five-member East Asia Governance Circle (EAGC), two Stewards to the Global Governance Circle (GGC), and implemented by a team of 11 people in collaboration with various East and Southeast Asian organizations and communities.
Provide spaces for civil society to co-create and innovate ideas and projects, to facilitate services and activities towards improving the lives of citizens and communities, and to strengthen citizens’ engagement and accountable governance
Contribute to the building of a regional movement that is empathetic, accessible, and inclusive
Support democratic movements in their struggles to demand transparency and exact accountability from governments, institutions, and corporations
Provide civil society and the public with the knowledge and tools to effectively defend democracy, rights, and freedoms
Build platforms and channels that the silenced, marginalized, and minoritized can use to amplify their voices
Acting on the principles of co-creation and collaboration, I4C-EA facilitates the hub’s strategic direction, with the CSO communities on the frontlines and at the center of the process.
In the past five years, there have been various critical meetings where key strategic points were identified and primed for community-led actions. Building and expanding upon itself over the years, the current set of strategic focus are the following:
REIMAGINE A POST-COVID FUTURE to ensure civil society activists are better able to meet the demands of this unprecedented time while remaining effective, efficient, and holistically safe and secure, mindful as well of their own rights and welfare
COMBAT DISINFORMATION by East Asian governments through workshops for activists, research papers, and public campaigns
BUILD CAPACITIES OF CIVIL SOCIETY to deal with security risks and shrinking civic spaces and contribute to the building of legal, mental, and physical resilience of activists
AMPLIFY VOICES of the silenced, marginalized, and minoritized communities in the region especially with the rising authoritarianism in the region and the inevitability of the Belt and Road Initiative
CLIMATE CHANGE and the ENVIRONMENT concerns are intersectionally placed on the table of human rights and democracy discussions by a civil society that is increasingly committed to these issues
GENUINE DEMOCRACY WITHIN CSOs is promoted towards the practice of transparency and accountability founded on transformative collective leadership, respectful of all roles where advocates enjoy the rights we champion
YOUTH LEADERSHIP is fostered by creating a space for the youth to practice their advocacies, and supporting the development of these future leaders and shapers of positive changes in the region