Partnership Between UW and Kazakhstan Grows as New University Opens in Astana, Kazakhstan

For up-to-date information, go to the UW-Nazarbayev University Project website:

A group of leaders in education and members of leading educational organizations were on-hand June 29-30, for the presentation of the new Nursultan Nazarbayev University in Astana, Kazakhstan.

In March, UW-Madison entered into a partnership with Nazarbayev University to consult on the development of their college of humanities and social sciences. UW-Madison representatives in Astana included professor and chair of Central Asian Studies, Uli Schamiloglu, and Cynthia Williams, director of external relations in the Division of International Studies. They were joined by leading officials from Duke, Carnegie Mellon, Harvard, and University College-London.

The group toured the university facilities and the city of Astana before hearing from Kazakhstan’s President and the university’s namesake, Nursultan Nazarbayev, about his “Strategy 2020.” The plan aims to realize steady economic growth through accelerated industrialization and infrastructure development.

The American and English educators and officials understood their universities had been a model for the new Nazarbayev University, which will be presenting their students with the opportunity for a world-class, English-language education in Kazakhstan.

Chancellor Biddy Martin signed a contract for partnership with Aslan Sarinzhipov, CEO of JSC New University of Astana, and additional members of a Kazakh delegation, in March of 2010. Read more about the partnership.

Local media articles on the growing partnership: