Global Index Ranks KazISS Among Top Think Tanks in the World

ASTANA – The country’s top think tank, the Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies under the President (KazISS), was recently ranked among the world’s top think tanks, the institution’s press service reported Jan. 31.

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“KazISS’s first-ever rating in the Global Go To Think Tank Index, Defence and National Security Rating is higher than ever,” the headline of the release reads.

“A think tank from Kazakhstan takes a leading position among similar institutions from all over the world for the first time,” the press release continues. “According to the 2016 Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) of the Lauder Institute at the University of Pennsylvania, KazISS was listed among 150 best think tanks of the other 6,000 analytical institutes and centres in the world. Earlier KazISS had been included into the rating under certain individual categories.”

KazISS had been ranked 148th in the category Top Think Tanks Worldwide (non-U.S.); second in the Top Think Tanks in Central Asia; 95th in the Top Defence and National Security; 27th in the Top Energy and Resource Policy Think Tanks and 56th in the Best Government Affiliated Think Tanks.

According to TTCSP, The Global Go To Think Tank Index is the result of an international survey of more than 1,950 scholars, public and private donors, policy makers, and journalists who helped rank more than 6,500 think tanks using a set of 18 criteria developed by the TTCSP. The purpose of the index is to help improve the profile and performance of think tanks while highlighting the important work they do for governments and civil societies around the world.

“TTCSP conducts research on the role policy institutes play in governments and civil societies around the world,” the report explains. “Often referred to as the think tanks’ think tank, TTCSP examines the evolving role and character of public policy research organisations. Over the last 26 years, the TTCSP has developed and led a series of global initiatives that have helped bridge the gap between knowledge and policy in critical policy areas such as international peace and security, globalisation and governance, international economics, environmental issues, information and society, poverty alleviation, and healthcare and global health. These international collaborative efforts are designed to establish regional and international networks of policy institutes and communities that improve policy making while strengthening democratic institutions and civil societies around the world.”

“Since its inception in 1989, the TTCSP has focused on collecting data and conducting research on think tank trends and the role think tanks play as civil society actors in the policymaking process. In 2007, the TTCSP developed and launched the global index of think tanks, which is designed to identify and recognise centres of excellence in all the major areas of public policy research and in every region of the world. To date TTCSP has provided technical assistance and capacity building programs in 81 countries. We are now working to create regional and global networks of think tanks in an effort to facilitate collaboration and the production of a modest yet achievable set of global public goods. Our goal is to create lasting institutional and state-level partnerships by engaging and mobilising think tanks that have demonstrated their ability to produce high quality policy research and shape popular and elite opinion and actions for public good,” the report stated.

KazISS was established in 1993 in the then capital city of Almaty and in 2014, the think tank relocated to Astana.