The Graduate School of Development

The Graduate School of Development (GSD) consists of UCA's Institute of Public Policy and Administration, the Mountain Societies Research Institute, the Cultural Heritage and Humanities Unit and the Civil Society Initiative.

Over 100 peer-reviewed research publications have been produced through GSD since 2011, and are available for free download from UCA's website. GSD aims to generate knowledge that has practical application to mountain communities. The School is multi - dimensional, interdisciplinary, and is designed primarily as a professional graduate school.

Institute of Public Policy and Administration

The Institute of Public Policy and Administration (IPPA)was established in 2011 to strengthen public policy in Central Asia.It provides in-depth analysis on current and emerging policy issues facing the region, and improves the analytical capacity of governments and civil society to use evidence-based research in the decision-making processes.

To date, it has published more than 40 research papers in these areas in English and Russian as part of the IPPA's Working Paper Series. The Institute aims to improve the quality of governance through initiatives such as its Executive Masters in Economic Policy, and Certificate Programme in Economic Policy, for civil servants in Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.

Mountain Societies Research Institute

The Mountain Societies Research Institute (MSRI) conducts trans-disciplinary research to help inform and contribute to the Sustainable Mountain Development agenda in Central Asia. It's research is aimed at addressing the development needs of the region and improving the well-being of mountain societies in Central Asia. Themes include natural resource management, land systems and livelihoods, disaster risk reduction, biodiversity conservation, climate change, and achieving Sustainable Development Goals.

MSRI has published Background Paper series and Policy Brief series, which provide structured assessments of knowledge (and knowledge gaps) in priority areas, and help to inform MSRI's emerging research agenda. The Institute has also created a Knowledge Hub to serve as a central point for information and data related to mountain societies in the Central Asian region.

Civil Society Initiative

UCA's Civil Society Initiative (CSI), with extensive outreach across the region – both rural and urban, aims to facilitate learning networks around key themes of governance, health, education, disaster risk management and the environment. CSI is a first step towards the possible establishment of an Institute for Civil Society at UCA, whose mission would be to foster a more enabling policy and administrative environment for civil society in Central Asia and assist the development of a broad spectrum of civil society actors. CSI's initial geographical focus is Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan, with a longer-term goal to expand into Northern Pakistan and North-Eastern Afghanistan once an Institute is established.

Cultural Heritage and Humanities Unit

The Cultural Heritage and Humanities Unit (CHHU) was launched in 2013 to generate new dialogues on Central Asian heritage and identity.It preserves the rich and diverse cultural heritage through research, documenting, archiving, and supporting work of regional scholars through the UCA's Cultural Heritage Book Series.

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