National Student Olympiads completed in Central Asia

For seven years, the Kazakh-German University (KGU) has been annually holding an Olympiad in the field of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) among students from Central Asian countries. Since last year, the University has expanded the subject matter of the Olympiad and conducts it within the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) developed by the UN.

This year the Olympiad is addressed Sustainable Development Goals 6, 7, 9 and 13 and includes the following three topics:

  • Integrated water resources management;
  • Climate change and clean energy;
  • Industrialization, innovation, and infrastructure.

With the support of the Global Water Partnership Central Asia and Caucasus  (GWP CACENA), the database of questions for the first topic was updated based on the GWP Toolbox. The main goal is to enable students to learn a tool that is used all over the world. This topic is supervised by the Central Asian Youth Network for water resources "Central Asia Youth for Water" ("CAY4W") and the Swiss Agency for development and cooperation.

 The Olympiad provides students of all five Central Asian countries with unique opportunity to get acquainted and delve into the world of knowledge on current relevant and constructive topics, get acquainted with modern mechanisms developed by the UN and levers for achieving sustainable development goals.

 The Olympiad is eligible for students of higher education institutions that study IWRM courses, "Integrated use and protection of water resources", ecology, meteorology, energy, technical courses related to industry, logistics and innovation; "International relations", specializing in national and international water law; "environmental impact assessment";  those who receive the qualification of technical (engineering, agro-technical and agronomic) skills for optimizing the use of water resources.

 The first stage (national level) of the Olympiad started from March 15 to April 25 2021. It aimes to identify the most talented young professionals who will become the personnel reserve of the authorized Ministry/Agency in the future. The national stage of the Olympiad was held separately in all Central Asian countries:

30-31 March 2021 in Turkmenistan;

9-12 April 2021 in Uzbekistan;

14-15 April 2021 in Tajikistan;

16-19 April 2021 in Kyrgyzstan;

22-23 April 2021 in Kazakhstan.

 The hosting organizations in Central Asian countries are:

The first stage (national) of the Olympiad consisted of 2 parts in the online format:

Day 1 — written testing,

Day 2 — oral testing (interview) with members of the jury.

Participants who scored the most points in testing were invited to the subsequent interview.

The winners of the first stage (national) from each Central Asian country will participate in the second stage (regional).

Cooperation between KGU and the Central Asian educational institutions has led to success of the National Student Olympiads in the countries.

The SDGs Olympiad 2021 is an example of long-term and fruitful cooperation between the GWP CACENA partners (both KGU and CWPs). The leading specialists of GWP CACENA contributed to the test questions for the Olympiad, and participated as members of the jury.

The second stage (regional) will be held by the Kazakh-German University in Almaty. The planned date for the second stage of the Olympiad is from June to August 2021.