“COVID-19: Response and Recovery in Kazakhstan” – a competition of scientific projects for students.

Young Researchers Alliance (YRA) supported by Corporate Fund «Social Development Fund» launches a call for proposals for funding research projects on COVID-19 Response and Recovery Solutions for Kazakhstan.

Fostering Research and Innovation Potential (FRIP) program was established a year ago. Since then 3 calls have been finalized and 71 students of Nazarbayev University have been granted financial support for the implementation of 51 research projects. 

There were no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Kazakhstan when the new call for proposals was being planned. However, plans got changed with the first reported cases in the country. 

The current situation in the country and the world will inevitably bring significant changes. State of Emergency declared from 16th March to 15th April 2020 and lockdown of major cities have a profound effect on daily lives, systems, and structures in Qazaqstan. The world needs new solutions the scientific community can provide. Researchers and scientists must focus on mitigation of pandemic consequences and integration of novel effective solutions in most affected areas of the local economy. Therefore, FRIP program ​was adjusted to the current reality to support our country and citizens by focusing the student research on the search of effective solutions. 

FRIP program is designed to advance research and innovation potential of NU student researchers in all fields of science and disciplines by providing financial support. 

The scope of proposals may include novel approaches, methods, and technologies in different areas such as (but not bound to) healthcare system, supply chain management, education, transportation and logistics, infrastructure, production and manufacturing, food and beverages, social sciences, economy & business, politics & international relations, public policy and administration. The proposed solutions may be designed to improve Emergency Management (prevention/mitigation, preparedness, response, or recovery phases) in Kazakhstan in case of future outbreaks and other natural disasters based on the COVID-19 pandemic response across states. It welcomes all research, from fundamental to applied, with the capacity to foster students’ research skills, generate science-related knowledge, and promote the sustainable development of Kazakhstan

In addition to that eligible candidates must be undergraduate (second year and higher), Master’s, or PhD student of Nazarbayev University, the project must be conducted remotely and not require working in groups of more than 3-5 people (social distancing). Project’s duration must not exceed 6 months and not require any travels. 

The selection process will be in three stages. After the applications are checked for all the requirements, projects will follow an expert-based evaluation process using double-blind review. Evaluation criteria include the concept, novelty, impact, and feasibility. Research proposals must demonstrate an achievable plan of execution. In the third stage, short-listed proposals will be considered by the YRA selection committee. 

Applications should be submitted electronically to Young Researchers Alliance e-mail yra@nu.edu.kz email address. 

Application package checklist: 

Mandatory: 

  • Completed Application Form;
  • Enrollment Verification Letters;
  • Most recent unofficial or official school transcripts

 

Not mandatory: 

  • Contact information about the project faculty consultant (to be filled in the Application form). 

A full project report, including a detailed description of project outcomes achieved and funds spent, is submitted to the YRA Board upon the project completion. Research progress reports may be requested as well. Deviations to the original proposal require prior approval from the YRA Board through the written request. All the relevant forms and guidelines will be provided.