Economy • 19 May, 2018

Role of civil society institutions in conditions of global transformation discussed at AEF 2018

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Within the framework of the XI Astana Economic Forum: Global Challenges Summit 2018, a panel session on "The future of civil society. New civic activity" was held.

The panel session was attended by representatives of state bodies and non-governmental organizations, political scientists, experts from near and far abroad.

Speaking to the participants with a report, the Minister for Religious Affairs and Civil Society of Kazakhstan, Darkhan Kaletayev, raised a number of topical issues on further development of civil society in Kazakhstan.

"Kazakhstan is moving in one direction with world trends. The Head of State named five major megatrends of planetary development. Among them are the digitization of all aspects of human activity, energy revolution, rapid growth of the world's population, changing pace and nature of urbanization, and global labor market. Therefore, for the first time as part of the transformation of AEF 2018, we decided to look into the future of civil society. We invited authoritative experts to discuss the issue of how the new positive civic activity will influence the daily life of people and the state," said Darkhan Kaletayev.

D. Kaletayev shared his remarks on the influence of social networks on the mass consciousness of people, and also noted the fact that traditional institutions of civil society compete with new network institutions for the right to have a monopoly on the expression of public opinion. According to him, social networks and the Internet have opened us another kind of civic activity — virtual, when everyone can participate in the discussion of state initiatives, social problems and make constructive proposals for their solution.

The Minister noted that civil society should become a conductor of a new transformation, for this it needs to acquire knowledge, develop new skills and competencies, and improve the culture of communications and interaction.

Such well-known experts, as Head of the Talap Center for Applied Research, Rahim Oshakbayev, Director of the Center for Analysis of Social Problems Public Fund, Meruert Makhmutova, Director of the Center for Studies of Civil Society and the Nonprofit Sector at the Higher School of Economics, Irina Mersiyanova (Moscow, Russia), Rector of AlmaU University, Gulmira Kurganbayeva, political scientist Sayasat Nurbek, spoke about modern trends in NGO development, social entrepreneurship as a form of civil activity.

Within the framework of the panel session, an interactive exhibition devoted to implemented innovative projects and best practices in the sphere of civil society was held.

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