How was YRA created?
Young Researchers Alliance (YRA) was created on April 18th in 2018, by enthusiastic early career researchers working and studying at Nazarbayev University. A common goal that united young professionals from completely different fields was to create an effective platform for interaction between young researchers in Kazakhstan and abroad. The absence of such a platform hindered professional solidarity and experience exchange among early career researchers. YRA has expanded from a small team of passionate researchers of Nazarbayev University to an alliance with 198 members from different institutions and cities and keeps growing every day.
What is YRA?
YRA defines itself as a voluntary, self-managed, non-profit association established by the representatives of different research backgrounds, who are young and early career researchers, including graduate students and employees active in research.
The vision of YRA is to create a supportive environment for new generations of researchers, scientists, and academics, to support young and early career researchers in aspirations to conduct cutting edge research across disciplines.
YRA members are acknowledged as highly qualified young researchers and some of them have received letters of appreciation from the President of Kazakhstan. Moreover, YRA members also have been selected as members of the Council of Young Researchers under the Ministry of Education and Science of RK to represent young researchers’ interests in government policy regarding scientific activity and commercialization of its results.
Events held by YRA
During its short period of existence, YRA has organized a number of events in Nur-Sultan and Almaty cities. The first significant event held by YRA was the Networking Reception in December 2018 in Nur-Sultan, where members had an informal evening to meet like-minded people. After receiving a lot of positive feedback from participants of the event it was decided to make this event traditional. Since a large number of early-career researchers are based in Almaty, it was a great idea to organize there next Networking Reception in August 2019.
YRA celebrated its anniversary in May 2019 by organizing The First YRA Forum, where experts from various disciplines gave speeches and demonstrated results of their research activities. Participants of YRA events provided a lot of positive feedback and gratitude for the initiative to unite young researchers into one community of like-minded people with a huge passion for scientific research. Furthermore, YRA organizes series of research seminars on various topics that may be interesting to young researchers.
Grants for NU students
Apart from event organization, YRA, supported by Nazarbayev University Social Development Fund, has been able to announce a contest for funding research projects of undergraduate and master students at Nazarbayev University called “Fostering Research and Innovation Potential” program (FRIP). Nine teams and individual projects, accounting for thirteen students, received financial support up to 1 million tenge for the implementation of their ideas. Each proposal was blindly reviewed by three independent experts who are highly qualified researchers either with a doctoral degree or on the final stages of their doctoral studies. Currently, the third call for proposals for FRIP has been announced.
As was mentioned above, YRA keeps expanding and gathering more and more attention every day and is intended to continue raising professional and social issues of young researchers at government level and beyond, strengthening professional relations between its members, cooperation with professional organizations and associations, and mainly provide various kinds of support to its members.
Shared by Maira Zhaksybay
How to join YRA:
For more information and registration please visit YRA website