Public Lecture: Citizen Science and Post-Socialist Economic and Agrarian Transformation in Central Asia

Date: 03 February 2020
Other languages: Русский язык |
February 3rd 2020, 16:00-18:00
 
Dr. Troy Sternberg
Senior Research Associate, School of Geography and the Environment
University of Oxford, United Kingdom

Dr. Irna Hofman
Post Doctoral Research Associate
University of Oxford, United Kingdom

Abstract
The beauty of citizen science is that we can all do it. The fact is that local people know their environment and community better than outside researchers. Also citizens are many, scientists are few. This creates a great opportunity to combine experts and residents to conduct citizen science. Local eyes, ears and hands can identify change, record data, and make key decisions. Such joint efforts strengthen science and understanding. Drawing on international examples and a case study in Mongolia, this lecture will provide a brief introduction to citizen science. In the first part of the lecture, Dr. Troy Sternberg will discuss why citizen science is important, which countries have embraced it, and how it is beneficial to Kyrgyzstan.

The second part of this lecture will focus on post-socialist economic and agrarian transformation in Central Asia, with specific regard to the role of international actors and their influence on policy-making and urban and rural livelihoods. Dr. Irna Hofman will discuss recent developments in the interactions between the Central Asian republics and international financial institutions, surrounding countries, and the growing presence of Chinese actors in the Central Asian countries. Attention will also be paid to the specific methods suitable to conducting research in Central Asia, such as quantitative and qualitative research methods.

Biographies
Dr. Troy Sternberg is a Senior Research Associate at the School of Geography and the Environment of the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom. Extensive travel has led to Dr. Sternberg's interest in desert regions, environments and people. He obtained a DPhil from Oxford University in 2009. He currently works on the ESRC-GCRF Inclusive Societies 'Gobi Framework: Mediation Model for Sustainable Infrastructure Development' jointly with University of Central Asia and Independent Research Institute of Mongolia. Dr. Sternberg has received awards and scholarships from the Royal Geographical Society, British Academy, Oman-Thesiger Desert Fellowship, British Science Association, UK-China Visiting Scholars, US Fulbright Fellow, the EU's 'Drylands Facing Change', and the UK Special Talent visa.

Dr. Irna Hofman is a legal and rural Sociologist specialising in agrarian transformation in Central Asia. Since 2019, Dr. Hofman has been a Post Doctoral Research Associate at Oxford University. She is also employed as a Post Doctoral Researcher at the Tajik National University, where she examines international relations and law with regard to the agrarian economy of Tajikistan. Dr. Hofman obtained her Ph.D. degree from the University of Leiden.

Location
University of Central Asia Administration Office
138 Toktogul Street
2nd Floor Seminar Room
Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.

Language
The lecture will be delivered in English.

Registration
Seating is limited, please confirm your participation by e-mail: elita.bakirova@ucentralasia.org.

Ideas presented in this lecture reflect the personal opinion of the speakers and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Central Asia and/or its employees.
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