Published in Forums & Events

Some Bright Spots on a Darkened Sky: Central Asia and Afghanistan Today

This forum event was conducted in the format of an interview with Dr. S. Frederick Starr, reflecting on his recent trip to Central Asia. 

Interviewer:

Mamuka Tsereteli, Senior Fellow, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute at American Foreign Policy Council

When: Tuesday, August 17, 2021

The event was livestreamed on the CACI Facebook page and is now available on YouTube.

 
Monday, 21 June 2021

2021 e-CAMCA REGIONAL FORUM

Published in Forums & Events

e-CAMCA 2021 Regional Forum 

Meet the talented speakers for each of our Forum panels below!

We are honored to have 30 distinguished panelists and moderators joining us next week from across the CAMCA region and beyond. Our panels are comprised of CEOs, CFOs, Chairmen, Directors, Senior Fellows, Acting Presidents, Deputy Ministers, Director Generals, Founders and more. We look forward to hearing their important insights surrounding this year's theme: "Economic Prospects of the CAMCA Region." 

Learn more about the members of the CAMCA Network featured throughout our panels here.

(All times EST)

MONDAY, JUNE 21st

9:45-10:00 AM

“New Opportunities Across CAMCA” - Welcome & Remarks by Dr. Svante Cornell Director, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute, American Foreign Policy Council

Watch it here 

10:00-11:00 AM

Panel Discussion - “New Regionalism in Central Asia and Its Challenges”

Moderator:

Dr. S. Frederick Starr, Chairman, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute, AFPC

Speakers:

Dennis de Tray, Board Member and Adviser to the President, Nazarbayev University

Dr. Subir Lall, Deputy Director, Middle East and Central Asia Department, IMF

Dr. Eldor Aripov, Director, Institute for Strategic and Regional Studies under the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan

Dr. Taleh Ziyadov, Director General, Baku International Sea Trade Port, Azerbaijan

Aziza Umarova, Co-Founder, SmartGov Consulting; CAMCA Network Member, Uzbekistan

Watch it here


TUESDAY, JUNE 22nd

9:00-9:45 AM

Keynote Interview with Dr. Sergei Guriev, Professor of Economics & Scientific Director of the Master and PhD programmes in Economics, Sciences Po

Interviewer:

Rakhim Oshakbayev, Director, Center of Applied Research “TALAP”; CAMCA Network Member, Kazakhstan

Watch it here

10:00-11:00 AM

Panel Discussion - “U.S. Withdrawal from Afghanistan: What Does it Mean for Political and Economic Alignments in the Region?”

Moderator:

Michael Doran, Senior Fellow, Hudson Institute

Speakers:

Dr. Omar Sharifi, Country Director, American Institute of Afghanistan Studies; Assistant Professor of Social Sciences, American University of Afghanistan; CAMCA Network Member

Ikram Sehgal, Chairman, Pathfinder Group; Chairman, Karachi Council on Foreign Relations

Amb. Gautam Mukhopadhaya, Senior Visiting Fellow, Centre for Policy Research in New Delhi; former Ambassador of India to Afghanistan (2010-2013)

Alex Vatanka, Director of Iran Program and Senior Fellow, Frontier Europe Initiative, Middle East Institute

Iskander Akylbayev, Executive Director, Kazakhstan Council on International Relations; CAMCA Network Member

Watch it here

 

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 23rd

9:00-9:45 AM

Keynote Interview with Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, Chairman & CEO, EmPath; Former U.S. Secretary of Commerce

Interviewer:

Samiullah Mahdi, Award-winning journalist and lecturer at Kabul University; CAMCA Network Member, Afghanistan

Watch it here

10:00-11:00 AM

Panel Discussion - “Impediments to Foreign Investments in CAMCA: Real or Imaginary?”

Moderator:

Gaukhar Nurgalieva, Senior Advisor, FMA; CAMCA Network Member, Kazakhstan

Speakers:

Yernar Zharkeshov, Principal and Head of Eurasia, Whiteshield Partners; CAMCA Network Member, Kazakhstan

Yusif Abdullayev, Acting President of Azerbaijan Export and Investment Promotion Foundation (AZPROMO)

Dulguun Baasandavaa, Deputy Chairman, National Development Agency of Mongolia; CAMCA Network Member

Baurzhan Kankin, Chairman, Social Entrepreneurship Corporation “Shymkent”

Watch it here

 

THURSDAY, JUNE 24th

9:00-9:45 AM

Keynote Interview with Saad Mohseni, Chairman & CEO, MOBY Group, Afghanistan

Interviewer:

Ali Aslan, International TV Presenter & Journalist Zoom

Watch it here

10:00-11:00 AM

Panel Discussion - “Will a New Entrepreneurial Class Drive CAMCA Economies?”

Moderator:

Zabihullah Ziarmal, Director General, Afghanistan National Standard Authority; Chairman, World Trade Centre Kabul Afghanistan; CAMCA Network Member

Speakers:

Valeri Chekheria, Serial entrepreneur and hotelier; Founder and CEO of Hospitality Projects; Adviser to the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia

Abdullo Kurbanov, Co-founder and CEO, Alif Bank; CAMCA Network Member, Tajikistan

Khulan Davaadorj, Founder, Director and Chief Technologist, LHAMOUR LLC; CAMCA Network Member, Mongolia

Aziz Soltobaev, Founder, KG Labs Public Foundation; CAMCA Network Member, Kyrgyzstan

Abdulahad Badghisi, General Manager, Samarkand Bukhara Silk Carpet JV

Watch it here

 

FRIDAY, JUNE 25th

9:00-9:45 AM

Keynote Interview with Douglas Becker, Founder & Chairman, CINTANA Education; Board Chair, International Youth Foundation

Interviewer:

Dr. Mamuka Tsereteli, Senior Fellow, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute, AFPC

Watch it here

10:00-11:00 AM

Panel Discussion - “Can Education Systems of CAMCA Countries Adjust to New Labor Market Demands?”

Moderator:

Yernar Zharkeshov, Principal and Head of Eurasia, Whiteshield Partners; CAMCA Network Member, Kazakhstan

Speakers:

Dr. Shamsh Kassim-Lakha, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, University of Central Asia

Fariz Ismailzade, Executive Vice Rector, ADA University, Azerbaijan

Hikmat Abdurahmanov, Co-founder and CEO, TEAM University; Co-founder, HMPARTNERS; CAMCA Network Member, Uzbekistan

Talant Sultanov, Co-founder and Chair, Kyrgyz Chapter of the Internet Society; CAMCA Network Member, Kyrgyzstan

Dr. Irakli Laitadze, Chief Financial Officer, GMT Mtatsminda; Lecturer at Ilya State University in Tbilisi; CAMCA Network Member, Georgia

Watch it here 

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Published in Forums & Events

Human Rights Reforms in Kazakhstan

For several years, the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program has focused its attention on the process of reform across Central Asia and the Caucasus. This online forum marks the publication of a study of human rights reforms in Kazakhstan. The country’s high ambitions for its place in the world demanded a serious re-consideration of the country's human rights record, something President Tokayev has embarked upon in recent years. Dr. Svante Cornell will present his research on the matter, documenting Kazakhstan's progress in this regard as well as challenges in the implementation of reforms.

Speakers:

Svante E. Cornell, Director, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program

Amb. George Krol, Associate, Harvard University Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Former United States Ambassador to Kazakhstan

Moderator: 

S. Frederick Starr, Chairman, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program

When: Thursday, June 17, 2021

The event was also live-streamed on the CACI YouTube page.  

 

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AFPC-Full-Logo

 

News

  • New Article Series on Changing Geopolitics of Central Asia and the Caucasus
    Wednesday, 24 November 2021 11:53

    Eurasia

  • CACI Initiative on Religion and the Secular State in Central Asia and the Caucasus
    Sunday, 24 January 2021 13:53

    In 2016, the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program launched an initiative on documenting the interrelationship of religion and the secular state in the region. This initiative departed from the fact that little systematic reserch had been undertaken on the subject thus far. While there was and remains much commentary and criticism of religious policy in the region, there was no comprehensive analysis available on the interrelationship of religion and the state in any regional state, let alone the region as a whole. The result of this initiative has been the publication of six Silk Road Papers studying the matter in regional states, with more to come. In addition, work is ongoing on a volume putting the regional situation in the context of the Muslim world as a whole.

     

    Case Studies

    Each study below can be freely downloaded in PDF format.

    az-formula-SRSP

    Azerbaijan's Formula: Secular Governance and Civil Nationhood
    By Svante E. Cornell, Halil Karaveli, and Boris Ajeganov
    November 2016   




    2018-04-Kazakhstan-SecularismReligion and the Secular State in Kazakhstan
    By Svante E. Cornell, S. Frederick Starr and Julian Tucker
    April 2018

     

     

     

    1806-UZ-coverReligion and the Secular State in Uzbekistan
    Svante E. Cornell and Jacob Zenn
    June 2018

     

     

     

    2006-Engvall-coverReligion and the Secular State in Kyrgyzstan
    Johan Engvall
    June 2020

     Event video online

     

    2006-Clement-coverReligion and the Secular State in Turkmenistan
    Victoria Clement
    June 2020

    Event video online

     

     

     

    Articles and Analyses

    Svante E. Cornell, "Religion and the State in Central Asia," in Ilan Berman, ed., Wars of Ideas: Theology, Interpretation and Power in the Muslim World, Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2021.

    Svante E. Cornell, "Central Asia: Where Did Islamic Radicalization Go?" in Religion, Conflict and Stability in the Former Soviet Union, eds. Katya Migacheva and Bryan Frederick, Arlington, VA: RAND Corporation, 2018.

  • Basic Principles for the Rehabilitation of Azerbaijan's Post-Conflict Territories
    Wednesday, 07 October 2020 09:01

    Rehab-coverIn 2010, the CACI-SRSP Joint Center cooperated with Eldar Ismailov and Nazim Muzaffarli of the Institute for Strategic Studies of the Caucasus to produce a study of the methodology and process for the rehabilitation of the occupied territories in Azerbaijan. The study was written in the hope that it would prove useful in the aftermath of a negotiated solution to the conflict.

    Such a resolution nevertheless did not materialize. At present, however, it appears that some of these territories are returning to Azerbaijani control as a result of the military conflict that began in late September, 2020. While it is regrettable that this did not come to pass as a result of negotiations, it is clear that the challenge of rehabilitating territories is as pressing today as it would be in the event of a peaceful resolution - if not more, given the likelihood that such a solution would have included a time-table and provided the Government of Azerbaijan and international institutions time for planning.

    It is clear that the study is a product of a different time, as much has changed since 2010. We fully expcect many updates and revisions to be needed should the recommendations in this study be implemented today. That said, we believe the methodoloy of the study and its conclusions remain relevant and would therefore like to call attention to this important study, published in English, Russian and Azerbaijani versions.

    Click to download:

    BASIC PRINCIPLES FOR THE REHABILITATION OF AZERBAIJAN’S POST-CONFLICT TERRITORIES

     

  • Resources on the Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict
    Monday, 05 October 2020 08:19

    Resources on the Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict

     

    The Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program have a long track record of covering the Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict. This page presents the key resources and most recent analysis. 

    In 2017, Palgrave published the first book-length study of the International Politics of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict, edited by Svante Cornell. The book concluded by arguing that if international efforts to resolve the conflict are not stepped up, “the ‘four-day’ war of April 2016 will appear a minor skirmish compared to what is sure to follow”.

    In 2015, CACI & SRSP released the Silk Road Paper  “A Western Strategy for the South Caucasus”, which included a full page of recommendations for the U.S. and EU on the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict. These are reproduced below:

    ------------------

    Develop a substantial and prolonged Western initiative on the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict.

    o This initiative must be led by the United States, in close consultation with its European partners – primarily the EU Commission and External Action Service, and France. Barring some process to reinvigorate the Minsk Process – a doubtful proposition given Western-Russian relations in the foreseeable future – Western leaders must be prepared to bypass that process, utilizing it where appropriate but focusing their initiative on developing direct negotiations between the Armenian and Azerbaijani leaders.

    o The U.S. and its European partners must abandon the practice of relying solely on the Minsk Group co-chairs to resolve the Karabakh conflict. These diplomats have contributed greatly to formulating a workable framework agreement. However, strong and sustained U.S. Government leadership from the top level is needed to complement or, failing that, to replace the Minsk Process. In practice, this means the expressed support of the President, involvement of the White House, and leadership manifested in the appointment of a distinguished citizen as Special Envoy for the resolution of the conflict.

    o The EU must take a more clearly defined and substantial role in the process, by integrating to the highest degree possible the French co-chairmanship of the Minsk Group with EU institutions. While Washington will need to take the lead on the political side, it would be natural for the EU to take the lead in organizing an international development program for the currently occupied Azerbaijani provinces and Karabakh itself. That effort, too, would need to be led by a senior EU figure.

    --------------------------------------------

    In 2011, CACI & SRSP helped launch an extensive study of the steps needed for the post-conflict rehabilitation of Azerbaijan's occupied territories, in cooperation with Eldar Ismailov and Nazim Muzaffarli of the Institute for Strategic Studies of the Caucasus. The monograph "Basic Principles for the Rehabilitation of Azerbaijan's Post-Conflict Territories" can be accessed here

     

    More background resources:

    Svante E. Cornell, "Can America Stop a Wider War Between Armenia and Azerbaijan?", The National Interest, October 2020

    Brenda Shaffer and Svante E. Cornell, Occupied Elsewhere: Selective Policies on Occupation, Foundation For Defense of Democracies, January 2020. 

    Brenda Shaffer and Svante E. Cornell, "The U.S. Needs to Declare War on Proxies", Foreign Policy, January 27, 2020

    Svante E. Cornell, “The Raucous Caucasus”, American Interest, May 2017

    Svante E. Cornell, Small Nations and Great Powers: A Study of Ethnopolitical Conflict in the Caucasus, RoutledgeCurzon, 2001.

    Svante E. Cornell, The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict, Uppsala University, 1999

    More recent analysis:

    Turkey Seeks to Counter Russia in the Black Sea-Caucasus Region,” Turkey Analyst, 10/5/20, Emil Avdaliani

    Turkey’s Commitment to Azerbaijan’s Defense Shows the Limits of Ankara’s Tilt to Moscow,” Turkey Analyst, 9/25/20, Turan Suleymanov & Bahruz Babayev

     “Cross-Border Escalation between Armenia and Azerbaijan,” Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst, 9/25/20, Natalia Konarzewska

    Russia and Turkey: Behind the Armenia-Azerbaijan Clashes?”, Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst, 8/31/20, Avinoam Idan

    Armenia and the U.S.: Time for New Thinking?”, Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst, 10/2/19, Eduard Abrahamyan.

    Why Washington Must Re-Engage the CaucasusCentral Asia-Caucasus Analyst, 7/8/19, Stephen Blank

    Azerbaijan’s Defense Industry Reform”, Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst, 5/7/19, Tamerlan Vahabov.

    Military Procurements on Armenia's and Azerbaijan's Defense Agendas”, Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst, 3/27/19, Ilgar Gurbanov

    Armenia's New Government Struggles with Domestic and External Opposition,” Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst, 3/20/19, Armen Grigorian.

    Bolton's Caucasian Tour and Russia's Reaction”, Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst, 12/17/18, Eduard Abrahamyan.