Book about women entrepreneurs of Kyrgyzstan presented in Astana

The book revealing 18 unique stories of women entrepreneurs in Kyrgyzstan was presented in the city of Astana. The work is based on data collected by scientists from the Nazarbayev University’s Research Centre for Entrepreneurship (NURCE) during their expedition to the neighboring country. The book was prepared under the guidance of Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship at the Nazarbayev University Graduate School of Business Shumaila Yousafzai. Each story tells about how community-based tourism in Kyrgyzstan promotes local women empowerment, preservation of culture and contribution to the country’s economy. Developed in 1995 thanks to a project on promoting women’s empowerment, the Kyrgyz model of the community-based tourism evolved, resulting in 18 related offices in Kyrgyzstan to date, the professor noted. They help women acquire various skills, find employment and build a successful business in their area.

“In 2022, we were giving a grant by Nazarbayev University to do research on women entrepreneurship in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Central Asia, in general. The topic of this grant was to understand the involvement of women in the community-based tourism sector. We know that Kyrgyzstan is one country in Central Asia that has done really well in community-based tourism, especially, women’s involvement in the community-based tourism. In 2022, we went and interviewed women from across different regions of Kyrgyzstan. When we were interviewing them, we heard the amazing stories that were of huge contribution to their family, to society, to the economy and to the tourism sector. And, we knew that we needed to tell these stories to the people,” Yousafzai said.

“We go beyond just looking at Kazakhstan. We look at their region, we look at how, what factors drive the entry of new firms, what factors drive exits of firms, and how can we create eco-system of comparative market environment, such that young businesses and new entrepreneurs can blossom and grow into becoming the leading firms of the future,” said Joep Konings, Dean of Graduate School of Business at Nazarbayev University.

Scientists in Kazakhstan have conducted similar research, planning to present a book on the development of community-based tourism among women in the country by the end of the year.