2017 International Summer School

2017: International Summer School for researchers and practitioners from Central Asia

on Social Cohesion: Concept, Implementation and Impact Evaluation


  • Dates: 11–18 June 2017
  • Application Deadline: 31 March 2017
  • Online Programme Deadline: 30 April 2017
  • Location: Raduga Resort, Issyk-Kul, Kyrgyzstan
  • Contact Persons: Dr. Damir Esenaliev, Ms. Guljan Asylbek kyzy, Ms. Aida Bolotbekova
  • Contact Email: socosummerschool2017@gmail.com


Quality and nature of connections between people and groups is essential to stability and development. Social cohesion – “convergence across groups in society” – provides a structure for collective life that helps ensure greater degrees of predictability and certainty in inter- and intra- group relations. While there is no guarantee that all groups within a society will find agreement on all issues, the convergence across groups offers the incentive for groups to coexist as a peaceful society. Social cohesion has emerged over the last two decades as an important concept in both the academic and political discourses.

The Summer School “Social Cohesion: Concept, Implementation and Impact Evaluation” is a capacity building activity for researchers, practitioners, and policy makers in Kyrgyzstan and Central Asia under the “Social Cohesion through Community-based Development” project implemented in Kyrgyzstan from 2014 to 2017. The project aims to identify, pilot and build capacity for social cohesion mechanisms in community-driven development approaches. It has a focus on developing and piloting innovative approaches to strengthen social cohesion.

The summer school program covers the following topics:

  • Concept of social cohesion
  • Measurement of social cohesion using micro-data from Kyrgyzstan
  • Application of social cohesion as a development intervention outcome, such in impact evaluation studies

The summer school will provide practical skills on processing and analyzing micro-data on the statistical package Stata.


The summer school will take place from the 11 to 18 June 2017. The languages of instruction will be Russian and English. Simultaneous translation will be provided.

Sessions will include lectures, class discussions, group work, case study exercises and statistical analysis.

Keynote speaker:

Prof. Kathryn Anderson, Vanderbilt University, USA

  • Dr. Damir Esenaliev, SIPRI
  • Dr. Mandi M. Larsen, Jacobs University Bremen
  • Dr. Kanat Tilekeyev, UCA

Who should apply?

  • Researchers, primarily young professors, advanced PhD students and policy analysts from government, international agencies and civil society organizations based in Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan)
  • A completed first degree in a relevant social science is a minimum requirement for acceptance
  • A working knowledge of basic statistics is required. The online component of the selection process includes basic statistics exercises


Participation is free of charge for up to twenty successful applicants and will cover:

  • Tuition
  • Regional travel expenses based on reasonable and average air and bus ticket prices
  • Economy class return travel from Bishkek to Issyk-Kul
  • Accommodation and food

Additional spaces are available for self-funded participants.

Application requirements

Applicants should submit, in English or Russian:

  • A one-page curriculum vitae
  • A one-page essay on their motivation to attend the Summer School and how their attendance will benefit impact evaluation and policymaking in Central Asia
  • A letter of support from their current employer

These should be submitted via email to socosummerschool2017@gmail.com, with ‘Summer School Application’ in the subject line. The application deadline is 31 March 2017.

Shortlisted candidates will be contacted by 05 April 2017. And will be required to complete an online three-week programme that includes reading research materials on social cohesion, an assignment on basic statistics, and an online test based on previous materials by 30 April 2017.

Successful candidates will be selected by 10 May 2017.

Participants are required to bring their own laptops to the Summer School, with MS Word, Excel and PowerPoint software installed. Stata statistical package will be provided by the Summer school organizers.

Upon successful completion of the Summer School, the participants will receive a certificate of attendance.

Organising Institutions:

  • Stockholm International Peace Research Institute SIPRI is an independent international institute dedicated to research into conflict, armaments, arms control and disarmament. Established in 1966, SIPRI provides data, analysis and recommendations, based on open sources, to policymakers, researchers, media and the interested public. Based in Stockholm, SIPRI also has a presence in Beijing, and is regularly ranked among the most respected think tanks worldwide. For more information on SIPRI, visit www.sipri.org
  • Institute of Public Policy and Administration, University of Central Asia provides in-depth analysis of Central Asian economic policies and quality professional development opportunities for civil servants in the region. For more information on the Institute, visit http://www.ucentralasia.org/Research/ippa
  • ISDC – International Security and Development Center provides evidence-based analysis and policy advice on the interactions of security, conflict, violence and fragility with socioeconomic development, growth, employment and poverty alleviation. ISDC is based in Berlin and collaborates with a broad range of partners in academia, policy making and practice. For more information on ISDC, visit www.isd-center.org


The Summer School is funded by the World Bank and the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) as part of the “Social Cohesion Through Community-Based Development” project.

All information about Summer School can be downloaded from here.