Cooperation beyond Borders - Transnational Public Administration and Organizing (Baltic Sea Region/EU Eastern Partnership)

This module in the Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP) is carried out by the Academy of Public Administration at Södertörn University (Stockholm) on behalf of the Swedish Institute.

UPDATE: Application deadline extended to 29 April, 2022.

Swedish Institute Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP)

Welcome to the SAYP module “Cooperation beyond Borders – Transnational Public Administration and Organizing” (TPAO), a training program developed to provide the knowledge and skills necessary to excel in a context where governing takes place at various levels and includes public administration, corporations, and civil society organizations across various national contexts.

Here you can find information about:

Practical information:


August 14 – 21, 2022, in Tbilisi (if circumstances allow)
September 29 – 30, 2022, online
Complemented by onsite meetings with previous course alumni after August session

Number of participants:


Target countries:

Armenia, Belarus*,**, Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Sweden and Ukraine**.

* Please, see the Swedish Institute website for special conditions. Länk till annan webbplats, öppnas i nytt fönster.

** Given Russia’s war in Ukraine, the Swedish Institute now opens up the possibility for all Ukrainian citizens, regardless of where they are, to apply to SI Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP) 2022. The same applies to all other countries too: eligible are the citizens of target countries irrespective of their current country of employment.


Participation in SAYP is free of charge and includes meals, accommodation and travel

Language of instruction:


University Credits

This course can also be taken as an advanced level university course worth 7,5 ECTS credits. Contact us for further information.

Instructions for application documents:


To submit your application for TPAO, complete the form and append the necessary documentation. If you are applying for more than one module, please remember that you must send us a separate motivation letter for each one.

Application form - Länk till annan webbplats.Please send us your application no later than 29 April.

What is this module about?

The TPAO is a response to the growing realization and need among public servants and civil society actors working with the public sector to handle the increasingly transnational dimension in their daily work. The term transnational refers to public administration that takes place at the level of state, regional or local public agencies and that extends or must reckon with jurisdiction and practices from other countries, i.e. operate transnationally. The transnational dimension introduces a substantial grey zone to public administration practice as well as numerous stakeholder interests.

This module is tailor-made to educate and train young public service professionals to be able to navigate the challenges and opportunities for policy-making and administration required by the nature of transnational issues and practice. Because existing practice among professionals tends to yield to formalised rules in TPAO, it is imperative to equip the practitioners with instruments for understanding implications of their actions in the transnational dimension of their policy field. In addition, the module zooms in on the organizational level and elucidates the organizational dynamics that affect TPAO, and organizational challenges that are likely to occur when the transnational dimension enters the organization.

Said about the module:

“The TPAO module is engaging and well-structured. It provides knowledge and practical skills through interesting assignments in working groups.”

“We would totally recommend the course. Definitely read the literature in advance! Participate actively in the discussions. Enjoy :)”

“Definitely join it and try to get as much fun as you can from this project!”

“Apply! It will be beneficial for your professional development, it will help you to understand the concept of TPA and how we as young professionals can be more involved and better in TPA.”

How and what do we teach?

The module relies on a mix of lectures, discussions and case-based exercises. Building upon a unique interdisciplinary analytical approach, instructors and students examine how organizations face various transnational challenges, such as migration and welfare, transportation and emergency services, sustainability and climate change, just to name a few. We explore foundations of TPAO through themes of experimentalist governance, borders and centre-periphery dynamics, as well as legal regulations. We discuss key elements of TPAO focusing on knowledge, democracy and cooperation between multiple stakeholders. By taking part in learning activities delivered by prominent experts in their respective fields, young public sector professionals are given a unique opportunity to develop their policy work and professional skills, consolidating their earlier experiences and developing critical reflection on those experiences.

What are the learning objectives?

Upon completing the module, the participants will be able:

  • to demonstrate understanding of the specificities of TPAO, in particular how it differs from local and national public administration;
  • to communicate, reflect upon and critically evaluate the theoretical postulates of TPAO from a multidisciplinary perspective.;
  • to apply different organizational perspectives to appraise the internal dynamics that the introduction of a transnational dimension triggers in public organizations.
  • to assess the ongoing processes in their home organization from a transnational perspective.

How is the module organized?

The module is organized in three stages. The first stage consists of an online session contextualizing TPAO in geopolitical, legal and administrative context. The second stage consist of case-driven focus on organizational dynamics in relation to transnational cooperation. The last stage consists of participants’ project works. The formal programme is coupled with meetings and networking with prior alumni.

We are committed to delivering the module, including the ambition to arrange the meetings in person. This may require swift readjustments, but, to quote Angela Merkel, “Wir schaffen das”, it will happen! Alumni from years 2020 and 2021 in fact met in Kyiv in November 2021, as it was the only place we all could gather under the prevailing Covid-19 restrictions. Those restrictions are partially still in place in Sweden and therefore this year’s physical meeting is planned to take place in Tbilisi, Georgia.

For further information about the module, contact project coordinator Jaakko Turunen, (Ph.D. Pol.Sci, Lecturer in Social Work).

How can you apply?

You can apply if you are:

  • A citizen in one of the following countries: Armenia, Belarus*, Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Sweden, Ukraine**
  • Have a good command of English, both spoken and written
  • Have a relevant higher education (at least three years of study)
  • Are up to 35 years old (born 1987)
  • Are currently employed in one of the following groups:
    1. Policymakers (politicians, government officials, employees of political parties)
    2. Public servants (non-political civil servants working at public organisations)
    3. Civil society workers (CSO/NGO employees)
  • Your professional profile is relevant for the thematic content of the module of your choice and the Baltic Sea Region and Eastern partnership countries

*Due to the current situation in Belarus, SI took the decision that, as of 1 October 2020, we will not provide financial support to Belarusian state employees for on-site activities within SAYP. However, the participants may still attend online activities free of charge.

** The Swedish Institute’s funding of collaborative projects, scholarships and leadership programmes often includes Ukraine as the case with SAYP. We continue to follow the development of these initiatives closely and will continue to support organisations, projects and individuals in all ways possible. We are therefore opening up the possibility for all Ukrainian citizens, independently where they are, to apply to SI Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP) 2022. For more information, please see Länk till annan webbplats, öppnas i nytt fönster.

The application should contain the following documents:

(See instructions below)

Eastern Partnership / Baltic Sea Region

In case you have IELTS, TOEFL, Cambridge or any other internationally recognised certificate of your English proficiency, please include a copy of it. Otherwise, please ask your English language teacher or another professional who can evaluate and comment on your English language proficiency to assess your level of English according to the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) Länk till annan webbplats. on:

  • Listening
  • Reading
  • Spoken Interaction
  • Spoken Production
  • Writing
  • Any additional comments (optional)

As well as information about the person who carried out the assessment:

  • Full Name and Work Title
  • Organisation
  • Email
  • Phone Number
  • Date and Place
  • Signature

The SI Academy for Young Professionals 2022

Eastern Partnership / Baltic Sea Region

Please include the following information on the first page of your Letter of Motivation:

  • First name and Last name
  • Date of Birth
  • Citizenship
  • Organisation
  • Email
  • Occupation/Profession
  • Main Focus Area of Work
  • Country of Work/Residence


The letter of motivation is a personal enclosure to your application for participation in the SI Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP). The choice of thematic module(s) to attend, as well as your answers in the questions below should reflect your professional background and interests, but may also indicate your ambition to work with issues that, within your context and field of expertise, contribute to global development in general, and development of your home country or region in particular. The letter of motivation is your possibility to explain why you qualify for participation in the programme, and elaborate on driving forces, issues and topics that inspire you.


Please indicate clearly on the first page of your Letter of Motivation, which of the thematic modules that you would like to participate in, and in what preferred order/priority. Remember that you can only be selected for participation in one of the modules. The recommendation is to apply to maximum two modules that corresponds with your interest and professional role. More information can be on the SI website. All the available modules are listed below for your convenience:

  • Södertörn University:Cooperation beyond Borders - Transnational Public Administration and Organizing
  • Gothenburg University: Migration and Integration: Challenges and Good Practices for the Development of Inclusive Societies (University of Gothenburg &Georgian Institute of Public Affairs)
  • Linköping University:Sustainable e-Government for Resilient and Innovative Democratic Public Administration (SeGRID)
  • Lund University: Perspectives on Multi-level Governance, Decentralisation & Human Rights
  • Malmö University: Sustainable Public Management

In the main part of your Letter of Motivation, please address the following questions:

  1. Describe your platform (e.g. experiences, engagements, skills, drives, goals) from which you have the potential to contribute to a positive development in your home country. (Max 800 characters including spaces.)
  2. Evaluate and describe your possibilities (e.g. position, role, and mandate) to influence and develop processes and work carried out within your agency/organisation/network/community. (Max 800 characters including spaces.)
  3. Connected to your choice of first-priority SAYP module, and to your present work/commitment, describe a current challenge, important for your home country to address. (Max 800 characters including spaces.)
  4. Explain how SAYP will improve you to address the above mentioned challenged in yours current of future work position. (Relate your answer to a concrete suggestion for activity/action or process that you wish to commit to. Max 1000 characters including spaces.)

SI Academy for Young Professionals 2022

Examples of who can be your reference person

  • Supervisor
  • Employer/head/director
  • Tutor/mentor

Examples of who cannot be referred to and used as reference person

  • Family members/relatives
  • Partners
  • Friends
  • Individuals who demand compensation (money, goods, favours, services or other means) from you in order to give you a statement of reference

Why do we require a reference person?

The referee is expected to state an opinion of the applicant from a professional perspective and thereby provide an important supplement to the letter of motivation and the curriculum vitae.

During the selection process, the reference person may be contacted by the Swedish Institute for additional information.


The letter of reference must be completed in English and cannot exceed two pages. Any additional pages will be disregarded. In order to be valid, the letter must be dated and signed.

"The letter should also include the details of the applicant as well as contact details for the referee.

The completed letter of reference is then to be scanned to PDF format (please do not include this instructions page in the conversion) and enclosed along with your application. A letter that is not signed will be disregarded.


Information regarding the SI Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP) can be found on our website. Länk till annan webbplats. Länk till annan webbplats.

What to include?

The letter of reference must be completed in English. The referee may decide on how to allocate text between the questions provided, given that the letter does not exceed two pages. Any additional page will be disregarded. The completed letter must be signed and converted into PDF format.

State the following:

  • Applicant’s first and last name
  • Applicant’s date of birth
  • Applicant’s citizenship
  • Full name of the reference person
  • Title/position of the reference person
  • Organisation of the reference person
  • Email address of the reference person
  • Telephone number of the reference person
  • The capacity you know the applicant

Please, address the following questions in your reference.

  1. In your opinion, how would participation in the SI Academy for Young Professionals be valuable for the professional development of the applicant?
  2. Please evaluate the applicant’s leadership capacity and skills to contribute to development on behalf of your organisation.
  3. Please describe in what way your organisation would benefit if the applicant was accepted to the SI Academy for Young Professionals (if applicable)
  4. Additional remarks/comments (optional)
    1. Date and Place
    2. Signature of the Reference Person


Due to the development of the covid-19 pandemic it is unclear how the international travel restrictions will develop. At present, Sweden still limits the entry of third-country nationals. Hence, we have decided to organise our physical meeting in Tbilisi, in Georgia. For now, our main priority is the health and wellbeing of all participants and staff. We will monitor how Georgian Covid-19 restrictions evolve, and current regulations can be found here:

Russia’s war against Ukraine

This module has partly evolved thanks to our friends and colleagues at the Ukrainian School of Governance in Kyiv. We have been inspired by their insights and skills in public administration. We hope to be able to bring them on board as soon as possible.

We will also encourage all potential Ukrainian participants to apply. The Swedish Institute allows for internally displaced persons as well Ukrainians currently placed in neighbouring countries to apply. SAYP is not only one summer course, but it is a beginning of a life-time journey, and we will do whatever we can that such journeys can be pursued in independent Ukraine, also in the future. We also understand Ukrainian applicants may need help in obtaining the application documents. Please contact us to see how we can support you in this.

Further information and contact

If you have questions about the module and the application process during an active call for applications, please contact project coordinator Jaakko Turunen.

With general questions about SAYP, please consult Swedish Institute, Länk till annan webbplats.

Transnational Public Administration and Organising is funded by the Swedish Institute as a part of the SI Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP). SAYP is a training programme organised by Swedish universities and aimed at young policymakers, public servants and civil society actors from selected countries in the Baltic Sea Region, the EU’s Eastern Partnership and the Western Balkans. The purpose of the programme is to serve as a platform for sharing experience, building knowledge and networking around public governance issues. The programme is designed to strengthen participants’ ability to lead the change in their regions.