4:00 – 5:30 PM, Session 1: New Perspectives on Grassroots Peacebuilding
Diana Mamatova (former Project Coordinator, the United Nations in Kyrgyzstan) Grassroots Peacebuilding: Cross-Border Cooperation in the Ferghana Valley
Jafar Usmanov (former Lead Researcher at ACT Development Group, Tajikistan) Youth as Agents of Peace at the Tajik-Kyrgyz Border
Jeyhun Valiev (Independent Researcher, Azerbaijan) Assessing the Impact of NGO Peacebuilding Programs in the South Caucasus:
the Case of Nagorno-Karabakh
Break: 5:30 – 5:45 PM
5:45 – 6:45 PM, Session 2: Empowerment through Civic Literacy in Kazakhstan
Karlygash Kabatova (Astana Paper-Lab ResearchGroup, Kazakhstan) Overcoming a Taboo: Normalizing Sexuality Education in Kazakhstan
Anna Gussarova (Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies)
Countering Extremism versus Freedom of Online Expression: the Case of Kazakhstan
Reception: 6:45 – 8:00 PM
Since taking office in September 2016, the new President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev has initiated many reforms, ranging from economic and social policies aimed at improving the investment climate and the education and health systems to domestic and foreign policy changes aimed at eliminating any cult of personality, providing greater freedom of media and expression, and improving relations with neighboring States.
The pace and scope of the initiatives have taken many academics and experts by surprise and raises several questions. Are these reforms sustainable, and how do they impact the lives of Uzbekistani citizens? What are the consequences for relations between Uzbekistan and the international community? Do they provide an opportunity for Western countries to strengthen their relations with Uzbekistan and to improve their image, in the country?
Four panelists will discuss these issues with a focus on specific areas that President Mirziyoyev has targeted for reform, including civil society (Sean Roberts, GWU), economic development (Eric Rudenshoild, USAID), media (Navbahor Imamova, Voice of America) and education (Sebastien Peyrouse, GWU).