Events Calendar

The Chinese Belt and Road Initiative: The View from Kazakhstan and the Caucasus @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412
Nov 14 @ 4:00 PM – 5:30 PM

with Daniyar Kosnazarov and Fuad Shahbazov

Xi Jinping announced China’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative in Astana in 2013. Its land component – the Silk Road Economic Belt- aims to create transport corridors and increase connectivity from China to the west – through Russia and Belarus, and along roads and railways through Central Asia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Turkey. In this presentation, Daniyar Kosnazarov will analyze the projection of China’s soft power in Kazakhstan, and explain how a range of actors from countries are involved in this process. He will draw attention to the barriers which limit Chinese public and cultural diplomacy in Central Asia. Fuad Shahbazov will explain how in the South Caucasus, all three countries are interested in boosting cooperation with China to develop infrastructure projects. However, these ambitions are hampered by ongoing conflicts between the countries. China remains reluctant to become involved in regional conflicts, focusing instead on developing economic links and positioning the region as a gateway to Europe. As China continues to engage the states of the South Caucasus, this approach will be tested.


Fuad Shahbazov is a Baku-based policy analyst and author. His expertise include regional security, religious extremism, and military and defense industries. He is currently at the Daniel Morgan Graduate School of National Security in Washington DC. He was a Research Fellow at the Center for Strategic Studies under the President of Republic of Azerbaijan from 2016-2018. He was also a Visiting Researcher the Asian Center for Strategic Studies in Istanbul, Turkey, as well a Research Assistant at the European Policy Center in Brussels. Mr. Shahbazov is also a frequent analyst for BBC, Al Jazeera, Times of Israel, Jamestown Foundation, The Diplomat, and Central Asian – Caucasus Institute. He holds an MA degree in Political Science from University of Bologna.


Daniyar Kosnazarov’s research interests include youth, social media, and popular culture. As a visiting fellow at The George Washington University, his research focuses on the values and higher education expectations of Kazakhstan’s Generation Z. Mr. Kosnazarov is also the Editor-in-Chief of Steppe, an independent digital media outlet in Kazakhstan covering technology, entrepreneurship, education, leisure, and art. He is experienced working for both the government and private think tanks of Kazakhstan, and previously worked as Chair of the Department of Strategic Analysis at Narxoz University, evaluating strategy implementation. He previously was awarded an MA in International Relations and Regional Studies, Tsukuba University (Japan) 2012, and a BA in International Relations, Selcuk University (Turkey), 2009.




Symposium on China’s Mass Incarceration of Uyghurs @ Lindner Family Commons (Suite 602)
Nov 27 @ 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM
Symposium on China’s Mass Incarceration of Uyghurs @ Lindner Family Commons (Suite 602)

8:30: Registration

9:00: Opening Remarks

9:30-11:00: Panel 1: “Contextualizing the Re-education Camps

James A. Millward, Georgetown University

Sandrine Catris, Augusta University

Sean R. Roberts, The George Washington University

Michael Clarke, Australian National University

11:00-11:30: Coffee Break

11:30-1:00: Panel 2: “Documenting the ‘Re-education camps’ “

Sophie Richardson, Human Rights Watch

Timothy Grose, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

Seiji Nishihara, Kagoshima University

1:00-2:00: Lunch

2:00-3:30: Panel 3: “Impact of the Camps on Uyghur Communities

Joanne Smith Finley, Newcastle University

Darren Byler, University of Washington

Elise Anderson, Indiana University

Dilnur Reyhan, French National Institute for Oriental Studies (INALCO)

3:30-5:00: Roundtable on Responses of the International Community



Artemy M. Kalinovsky: Laboratory of Socialist Development: Cold War Politics and Decolonization in Soviet Tajikistan @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412
Dec 4 @ 4:00 PM – 5:30 PM
Artemy Kalinovsky’s Laboratory of Socialist Development investigates the Soviet effort to make promises of decolonization a reality by looking at the politics and practices of economic development in central Asia between World War II and the collapse of the Soviet Union. Focusing on the Tajik Soviet Socialist Republic, Kalinovsky places the Soviet development of central Asia in a global context.
Connecting high politics and intellectual debates with the life histories and experiences of peasants, workers, scholars, and engineers, Kalinovsky’s book investigates how people experienced new cities, the transformation of rural life, and the building of the world’s tallest dam. Kalinovsky connects these local and individual moments to the broader context of the Cold War, shedding new light on how paradigms of development change over time. Throughout the book, he offers comparisons with experiences in countries such as India, Iran, and Afghanistan, and considers the role of intermediaries who went to those countries as part of the Soviet effort to spread its vision of modernity to the postcolonial world.

Artemy M. Kalinovsky is Senior Lecturer of East European Studies at the University of Amsterdam. He is also the author of A Long Goodbye: The Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan (Harvard University Press, 2011), and co-editor with Sergey Radchenko, of The End of the Cold War and the Third World (Routledge: 2011), as well as the Routledge Handbook of Cold War Studies with Craig Daigle (2014). More recently, he co-edited, with Michael Kemper, Reassessing Orientalism: Interlocking Orientologies in the Cold War Era (2015) and Reconsidering Stagnation: Ideology and Exchange in the Brezhnev Era (Lexington, 2016), with Dina Fainberg. His work has appeared in the Journal of Cold War Studies, Cold War History, Foreign Policy, National Journal, Foreign Affairs, and the Washington Post

The 12th CAP Fellows Seminar Youth, Education, Tourism, and Identity: New Voices from Central Asia @ Voesar Conference Room 412
Dec 5 @ 4:00 PM – 7:00 PM
The 12th CAP Fellows Seminar  Youth, Education, Tourism, and Identity: New Voices from Central Asia @ Voesar Conference Room 412
4:00 – 5:00 p.m.
Panel I: Youth and the Future of Central Asia: Education and Social Activism
Aigoul Abdoubaetova (Kyrgyzstan)
Secondary Schools and Inequality: Navigating the Fragmented Landscape of Educational Choices in Bishkek
Daniyar Kosnazarov (Kazakhstan)
Do-It-Yourself Activism: Youth, Social Media and Politics in Kazakhstan
5:00 – 5:15 p.m. Break
5:15 – 6:15 p.m.
Panel II: New Approaches to National Identity: Tourism and Handicraft
Snejana Atanova (Turkmenistan)
Turkmenistan, A Plebiscite of Nation of Artisans
Sahib Jafarov (Azerbaijan)
Urban Tourism and a Clash of Cultures: Arab Inflows to Baku
6:15 – 7:00 p.m.
Russian Policy in Syria and the Middle East: Determination, Delight, and Disappointment @ Lindner Family Commons (Suite 602)
Dec 7 @ 9:00 AM – 2:15 PM

9:00 Coffee and pastries

9:30-11:30am. Panel 1. Russia’s Engagement Strategies in the Middle East

Nikolas Gvosdev (Naval War College/Foreign Policy Research Institute; Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs)

Russian Strategic Goals in the Middle East

Ekaterina Stepanova (National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO), Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow)

Russia’s Policy on the Middle East Conflicts: Regionalization and what it Means for the West

Mark Katz (George Mason University)

Not Getting Any Easier:  Putin’s Middle East Balancing Act

Anna Borshchevskaya (Washington Institute for Near East Policy)

Putin’s Russia in the Middle East: is there an Endgame?

11:30-12:00pm Lunch

12:00-2:15pm. Panel 2. Russia’s Military Involvement in Syria and its Impact

Michael Kofman (CNA Analysis and Solutions)

Russian Military Operations in Syria and their Implications for Russian Armed Forces

Gregory Simons (Uppsala University)

Russia in the Middle East: Emergence of a new Geopolitical Shatter Belt?

Antonio Giustozzi (King’s College London)

Putin’s Masterpiece: Russia’s Military and Diplomatic Role in Syria through Syrian and Iranian Eyes

Maria Omelicheva (National Defense University)

Russia in Syria: Reshaping the Global Order or Fighting Terrorism?

Igor Delanoe (French-Russian analytical center Observo, French-Russian Chamber of Commerce, Moscow)

How does Moscow Intend to Support Syria’s Reconstruction?


This workshop is part of the “Islam in Russia, Russia in the Islamic World,”
generously funded by the Henry Luce Foundation