Swedish Institute Leader Lab 2019 for Civil Society Leaders in MENA region


Application Deadline: 7th May 2019

Are you a civil society leader in South Asia or the MENA region? Are you working for a more gender equal world? SI Leader Lab is a programme for advocates of gender equality who wish to grow in their role while exploring new tools and forms for collaboration. Apply to SI Leader Lab if you want to grow as a leader, develop your advocacy skills and share knowledge in a network of inspirational peers.

SI Leader Lab 2019 will bring together 60 young influential civil society leaders in South Asia, the MENA region and Sweden who are active advocates of gender equality. The overarching objective is to strengthen leaders who are working for peaceful and inclusive societies.

The programme is an opportunity for you to develop your advocacy
skills and work on strategic outreach within your focus area. It’s also
an opportunity to grow as a leader, exchange experiences, form new
connections and to try out innovative tools and methods with peers
working in a similar context.

SI Leader Lab is a blended learning programme that runs over eight
months, mixing online meetings with two separate assemblies in Sweden.
Work in smaller learning groups based on region and thematic focus will
be combined with sessions that include all participants. The training is founded on experience-based and collaborative learning and will allow
you to explore real challenges and areas of development for your own
organisation in an innovative and supportive environment.

The programme is as much about personal as professional development.
It is about growing as a person with renewed confidence and insights,
and growing as a leader with new tools, methods and perspectives.

The particular expertise and experience of the participants will largely determine the topics that we work on. The following broader issues, however, will be central: value-based leadership and group development; effective advocacy methods; and, how to work efficiently with and within networks. The training will be conducted with a rights-based approach.


You can apply to SI Leader Lab if you:

  • Have a leading position (formal or informal) in a civil society organisation or network working for gender equality.
  • Work in a collaborative setting, where you have a leadership role (formal or informal).
  • Are between 22 and 32 years old (born 1987–1997).
  • Have a good working knowledge of both written and spoken English.
  • Are a citizen of Algeria, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, India,
    Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Nepal, Pakistan, Palestine, Sri
    Lanka, Syria, Tunisia or Yemen.
  • Are available to take part in all parts of the programme.
  • Are prepared to forward competences and knowledge you gain from the
    programme to your team, organisation or other relevant actors.


SI Leader Lab will give you:

  • Personal insights as a leader: how to lead yourself and others through increased self-awareness and increased understanding of group development.
  • An opportunity to explore effective advocacy methods that will help you shape and reach out with a message to intended audiences.
  • The possibility to share and build knowledge in a network of experts, to inspire each other and share experiences on common challenges.
  • Insights on how to expand your networks – and how to use networks as support in your work.

Costs covered and arranged by Swedish Institute

  • Training and content
  • Accommodation, food and domestic transport during the programme
  • Flight tickets to and from module 1 and 3 in Sweden
  • Insurance covering acute illness and accident when in Sweden
  • Visa costs

Costs covered and arranged by you

  • Domestic travel / airport transfer in your home country

Programme timeline

The programme, spread over eight months, mix online meetings with
three weeks of intense training divided into two separate assemblies in

  • Kick-off online (September 2019)
  • Module 1: Two weeks onsite in Stockholm, Sweden. 6–19 October 2019
  • Module 2: Online sessions and implementation. November 2019 – February 2020.
  • Module 3: Ten days in Sweden (location to be confirmed). 23 March – 2 April 2020.

The programme in Sweden will be with full-day schedule and several evening activities. Selected participants will have to commit to participating in all activities.

Application Procedure:


applicants who have submitted a complete application will be considered
for the programme. These are the steps in the application process:

  • Download and fill out the Leader Lab application form
  • Go to the application portal
  • Upload the completed application form in English, including your contact details and the contact details of two reference persons
  • Upload an updated CV in English
  • Upload a letter of recommendation*
  • Upload a photo (not compulsory).

* The letter of recommendation (no more than 500 words) should be
from a person who knows your work in the field of gender equality. The
letter should motivate your participation in the programme with
reference to the selection criteria; the letter should preferably be in
English but could also be submitted in French or Arabic. We prefer that
you use our template for the letter of recommendation, but it’s not
compulsory. Templates are available in English, French and Arabic.
We may contact the reference persons of the applicants who are selected
for an interview. We only need a letter of recommendation from one of
the reference persons.

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Swedish Institute Leader Lab 2019