Symposium on turning brain drain into brain circulation in Central Asia

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A magnet pulls yellow golden human figure out of the big crowd of people. Labor migration, the demand for specialists. Copyright: ilixe48


DOC in collaboration with the Volkswagen Foundation and the Tajik National University is organising a Symposium to address the problem of ‘Brain Drain’ in Central Asia. In the wake of the economic crisis that struck Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan after the breakup of the Soviet Union, labour migration flourished in Central Asia. One of the consequences of the economic downturn of Central Asian countries and the ensuing labour migration was the ‘brain drain’ of highly skilled labour from Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan in the 1990s and from other Central Asian countries in the 2000s. The current destinations of skilled labourers from Central Asian countries include countries in Western Europe, the US, Russia, and Kazakhstan. The consequences of the brain drain are still felt in the region today. Moreover, the expected shortage of medium to high-skilled workers in the receiving countries of Kazakhstan and Russia, caused by economic and demographic trends among other factors could potentially amplify the emigration of highly skilled workers from the rest of Central Asian countries.

The three-day symposium, which is hosted by DOC Research Institute and the Tajik National University in Dushanbe, Tajikistan will take place on 25-27 November 2019 in Dushanbe. The target group is made up of academics from Central Asia, with a special focus on young researchers. Administrators and politicians will also be invited. The symposium format has been chosen to allow participants to present their own research, but also allow enough time for discussion and critical exchange of ideas. At the same time, there will also be workshops aimed at fostering skills transfer, especially for the benefit of young researchers, by enhancing methods and research toolkits. Participants will receive certificates for completion of the workshops.


Call for Papers

This call for abstracts is designed to attract Citizens of Central Asian countries (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan) independent of whether they are presently working in their home countries or living abroad. We especially encourage those participants to apply who have left the region and are currently working overseas.

Abstract Submission:

The abstract length should not exceed 300 words and should address the objective and the policy implications of the research. There is no fee for submission or presenting at the symposium. Please send your abstract and a short CV to and

Important dates:

The deadline for abstract submission: 15 Sept 2019

Notification of acceptance: 15 Oct 2019

Registration deadline: 01 Nov 2019

Full paper submission: 15 Nov 2019

Date of the Conference: 25 – 27 Nov 2019

Venue: The conference will take place at Tajik National University, Rudaki Avenue 17, Dushanbe 734025, Tajikistan. Further details will be sent at a later date.

Travel and Accommodation: Travel and accommodation costs are covered by the host and the partner institution.

Visa: Please contact Prof. Muzzafar Olimov: for the invitation letter and visa-related issues.

Registration Fee: There is no registration fee upon acceptance of the abstract.

Official Languages: The symposium will be held in English and Russian with simultaneous translation provided.

Dushanbe, Tajikistan

Rudaki Avenue 17


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