Astana, Kazakhstan – Representatives of the academic and research community from the countries of Central Asia, the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Republic of Kazakhstan, as well as of the European Union (EU) gathered at  Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) Conference, which was held at Nazarbayev University.

The event was organised by SDSN Kazakhstan jointly with the Science Fund of Kazakhstan, Nazarbayev University, the EU’s “Sustainable Energy Connectivity in Central Asia (SECCA)” project, and Chevron.

In his opening address, Mr Kestutis Jankauskas, the EU Ambassador to Kazakhstan, said: “This Conference marks an important step in strengthening the relationship between the European Union and the Central Asian countries in research and innovation. The challenges we face today are global in nature and require collective action. Whether it is combating climate change, transition to sustainable energy or accelerating the digital transformation, no single nation can tackle these issues alone. Researchers and innovators from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan stand to benefit greatly from participating in Horizon Europe. I encourage all to actively engage in the opportunities offered by Horizon Europe. Let us seize this chance to work together, learn from each other, and create a better, healthier and more sustainable future for all”.

The participants discussed research priorities and collaboration opportunities within the EU’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme, Sustainable Development Goals localisation and climate action, public opinion research on sustainability.

Within its scope of work, the SECCA project aims to strengthen capacity of CA institutions to participate in Horizon Europe programme, as well as to strengthen cooperation between universities in the CA region.

The Conference was followed by the workshop “Horizon Europe in Central Asia – Promoting Research Excellence and Collaboration for Sustainable Energy”.

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