Author Archives: United Nations Information Office

Strengthening the role of youth in building peaceful and inclusive societies

On June 7-8, 2018, the UNESCO Cluster Office in Almaty, with the support of the United Nations Information Office in Kazakhstan, held a discussion seminar on project planning on “Strengthening the role of youth in building peaceful and inclusive societies” with the participation of young students from Almaty educational institutions.

With global and social transformations, the role of youth in civic activity becomes vital, The process of introducing social and economic needs requires the recognition of a new social consciousness. Modern youth is significantly different from the older generation, primarily by the fact that it was formed and brought up in the vastness of the new state, new politics and social principles. At the same time, young women and men have a major advantage over the rest of the population, which manifests itself in their ability to generate their worldview in a new way, participate in the decision-making process, using a technological and creative approach to solving social problems.

AlmaU celebrates the World Environment Day

By Yagshimyrat Annamyradov, Vlastimil Samek and Danial Saari

ALMATY, Kazakhstan, 05 June 2018 – International Students Conference “Youth Initiatives for Environmental Sustainability” took place at Almaty Management University. The event was organized by the School of Public Policy and Law of AlmaU.

World Environment Day, celebrated on June 5, has been designated by the United Nations General Assembly in 1972 and is being celebrated since then worldwide, reaffirming the human’s concern for the preservation and enhancement of the environment (A/RES/2994 (XXVII)

ALMA University hopes that the conference devoted to the consideration of various aspects of sustainable development will become an effective platform for creative undergraduate, graduate and doctorate students to improve the results of their research, participate in scientific discussions, exchange new ideas, contacts and plans for further creative cooperation.

At the event Representative of the UN Department of Public Information, Mr. Vlastimil Samek, and a Representative of the UN Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), Mr. Yagshimyrat Annamyradov, highlighted the key role of partnership for development and enabling tools in promoting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through the reflection of Environment Protection. Their presentation also included the UN Secretary-General’s Mr. Antonio Guterres video message that says: “On World Environment Day, the message is simple: reject single-use plastic. Refuse what you cannot re-use. Together, we can chart a path to a cleaner, greener world”.

Ms. Tursyngul Gumarova, Head of the Laboratory for water- and energy saving at the Narxoz University, delivered a presentation on “Green” Universities and drivers of eco-innovations. Her presentation targeted garbology and enormous harm to the environment caused by the use of plastic materials. This topic also corresponds with this year’s theme ““Beat Plastic Pollution”.

Galiya Nurmukhanbetova, Associate Professor of the International Information Technology University (IITU) presented report on Green IT-technologies and sustainable consumption, using a collaborative consumption concept. She addressed the benefits and new trends of collective consumption. Overview of popular (web based) resources, such as Room sharing – Airbnb, CouchSurfing; Office sharing – SahreDesk, Coworking; Language learning – italki; Transport sharing – Uber and others, engaged the audience made the event’s participants interact and discuss the future development in this area. Also the “Implementation of sustainable development tools using the methodology for determining transversal competencies”, using the web-platform ‘Kahoot’ has been interactively presented by professor Saule Zeinolla.

The conference concluded with presentations of the students from Almaty Management University, International University of Information Technologies, Karagandy State University, Kazakh National Agrarian University, Abai Kazakh National Pedagogical University and the French Business School NEOMA.

The presentations of the corresponding works have been carried out in three languages: Kazakh, Russian and English. Following areas have been addressed: Digitalization and Green economy; Green economy is the way to sustainable development and Scientific and practical developments and innovations. If conforms the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development “to ensure the lasting protection of the planet and its natural resources”, in particular, Goals 14 and 15 focus on protecting under water and on land ecosystems, as well as on sustainably using marine and terrestrial resources. This reaffirms the responsibility of the international community, including academia, to take actions to enhance the environment, by deepening environmental awareness.

http://www.un.org/en/events/environmentday/

The international student conference participants |

UN photo/Yagshimyrat Annamyradov

 

The world prepares to celebrate the first official World Bicycle Day 

By Yagshimyrat Annamyradov and Vlastimil Samek

ALMATY, Kazakhstan, 3 June 2018 – On 12 April 2018, 193 member-states of the United Nations states adopted General Assembly Resolution A/Res/72/272, which declared June 3 as a World Bicycle Day.

How to integrate a two-wheeled transport in the city’s infrastructure? How to motivate people to use alternative, ecological and healthy means of transportation instead of cars and advance the use of the bicycle as a means of fostering sustainable development? These questions encouraged the Member States to devote particular attention to the bicycle in cross-cutting development strategies at all levels, by taking the first big step in that direction, declaring a World Bicycle Day.

How and who made it happen?

Professor of Sociology – Mr. Leszek Sibilski from Montgomery College (MD) was inspired by the idea of a Sustainable Mobility and its promotion. With the idea in mind, he approached the Permanent Mission of Turkmenistan to the UN, to lead the effort in establishing the annual event as Turkmenistan had already made a name for itself championing transport and sustainable mobility at the UN. The country had hosted the first ever global conference on sustainable transport and successfully sponsored resolutions pertaining to transport at the UN. These efforts resulted a resolution the General Assembly Resolution A/Res/72/272 that was sponsored by Turkmenistan and co-sponsored by some 56 countries by acknowledging the uniqueness, longevity and versatility of the bicycle, which has been in use for two centuries, and that it is a simple, affordable, reliable, clean and environmentally fit sustainable means of transportation, fostering environmental stewardship and health.
Photo credit: http://blogs.worldbank.org |
Professor Leszek Sibilski with members of Turkmenistan’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York

Is it a cycling boom in Central Asia?

Netherlands, Denmark, Japan, Spain, the USA, Ireland, Canada, China, Hungary and Colombia – all these countries are united by a developed bicycle infrastructure and the desire of citizens to breathe fresh air, rather than the car’s CO2 exhausts. In recent years, the Central Asian countries have demonstrated a huge interest and fashion for two-wheeled vehicles: it is cheap, healthy and environmental-friendly.
The first bicycle track in Kazakhstan and Central Asia appeared in Almaty in 2011. This gave a boost to development of the bicycle-sharing system. It became a part of the public transportation system in the cities of Kazakhstan, like Astana, Almaty and Shymkent.

Number of cycling supporters is growing in Turkmenistan. Mass cycling rides are being held on a regular basis in the country with a support on the highest level. The days without cars are getting more popular. A good example of it could be an upcoming ‘Car-free Day’ on 3 June 2018.

More than 800 million people around the world will ride a bicycle this year. They’ll participate in an efficient, healthy, sustainable and fun activity that provides reliable transportation, beneficial recreation and crucial access to food, education, work, health care, and other essential services. The bicycle has served the global community for more than 200 years. Today, the bicycle is more important as a mobility tool than ever.
Photo credit: Newspaper “Golden Age”: turkmenistan.gov.tm

Perhaps most promising for the future of cycling is the documented shift in cultural attitudes and preferences towards less reliance on the automobile and increased demand for living in mixed-use, compact developments in the city center . This event also serves as the best example of the increasing popularity of and support to the Sustainable Development Goals, especially Goals No.3, No. 11, No.13 and No. 17 as well as the responsible attitude towards enhanced improvement of human health and ecology.

Almaty automated bike rental stations |
UN photo/Yagshimyrat Annamyradov

http://blogs.worldbank.org/transport/world-bicycle-da..
https://peopleforbikes.org/celebrate-world-bicycle-da..
Goodwin & van Dender 2013

World Bicycle Day

On June 3, 2018, the first official World Bicycle Day will be celebrated.

Why celebrate the bicycle?

  • The bicycle is a simple, affordable, reliable, clean and environmentally fit sustainable means of transportation;
  • The bicycle can serve as a tool for development and as a means not just of transportation but also of access to education, health care and sport;
  • The synergy between the bicycle and the user fosters creativity and social engagement and gives the user an immediate awareness of the local environment;
  • The bicycle is a symbol of sustainable transportation and conveys a positive message to foster sustainable consumption and production, and has a positive impact on climate.

World Bicycle Day:

  • Encourages Member States to devote particular attention to the bicycle in cross-cutting development strategies and to include the bicycle in international, regional, national and subnational development policies and programmes;
  • Encourages Member States to improve road safety and integrate it into sustainable mobility and transport infrastructure planning and design, in particular through policies and measures to actively protect and promote pedestrian safety and cycling mobility, with a view to broader health outcomes, particularly the prevention of injuries and non-communicable diseases;
  • Encourages stakeholders to emphasize and advance the use of the bicycle as a means of fostering sustainable development, strengthening education, including physical education, for children and young people, promoting health, preventing disease, promoting tolerance, mutual understanding and respect and facilitating social inclusion and a culture of peace;
  • Encourages Member States to adopt best practices and means to promote the bicycle among all members of society, and in this regard welcomes initiatives to organize bicycle rides at the national and local levels as a means of strengthening physical and mental health and well-being and developing a culture of cycling in society.

Each person counts: Kazakhstani stories of the world drug problem in photographs

1-8 June 2018 Co-working centre «Sm.Art.Point», Almaty – The current photo exhibition “Each person counts: Kazakhstani stories of the world drug problem in photographs” is part of the global exhibition portraying the complex nature of drug use, and challenges and opportunities for drug dependence treatment and care in low- and middle-income countries, capturing the diversity of circumstances which lead to substance use, the ways in which people manage their addictions and displaying how treatment has affected their present.

The renowned photographer, Nick Danziger, tells the story of people affected by drug use disorders and of professionals providing drug dependence treatment and care services to those in need. Danziger visited Almaty along with other project sites in Europe, Asia and Africa, which form part of the UNODC-WHO Global Programme on Drug Dependence Treatment and Care. 

The Alley of Flags Opening Ceremony

On May 30, 2018 Turan University conducted the ceremony dedicated to the opening of Flags Alley which took place at the premises of the university. The Alley is presented by the flags of: The United Nations Organization, The Russian Federation, The United States of America, The People’s Republic of China, The Republic of Korea, The Federal Republic of Germany, The Republic of Turkey, The Republic of Poland, The Republic of Bulgaria, The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, The Swiss Confederation.

This event aims at expressing gratitude to countries, international organizations and universities for cooperation and productive interaction which promotes internationalization strategy of Turan University and its academic capacity.

Entrepreneurial Education in Rising Societies: Transformation of Values

On May 30, Almaty Management University hosted the II International Forum “Entrepreneurial Education in Rising Societies: Transformation of Values”.

The Forum brought together renowned Kazakhstani and international experts, CEOs, representatives of the business community, academia and government to discuss the values ​​and trends that shape modern entrepreneurial education in dynamic societies.