Developing innovation and introducing science into production: Alikhan Smailov outlines Nazarbayev University's priorities

On Saturday, March 4, Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Alikhan Smailov held a regular meeting of the Board of Trustees of Nazarbayev University, which considered the results of the organization for the past year and plans for the coming period.

It was noted that the university continues to expand the scientific activity, in particular for the last few years the number of research projects has increased from 146 to 366. At the same time the university is working on transferring its experience to other higher educational institutions of the republic through thematic conferences and professional development programs.

Another large-scale project is the participation of Nazarbayev University School of Medicine in the development of the pharmaceutical cluster in Astana, which is implemented within the framework of the instructions of the Head of State to increase the share of domestic producers on the market of medicines and medical products. In addition, on the basis of the University Medical Center UMC a number of complex surgical operations are performed, some of them, for the first time in Kazakhstan.

Head of the Government was also reported on the activities of the university in terms of innovation and implementation of science in production. So, in 2022 the scientists of the university received the patents, including international, as well as grants for commercialization. For example, a project on the use of robots in the fight against autism has been implemented in 22 rehabilitation centers of the republic.

Prime Minister stressed that the university needs to further strengthen research activities, its commercialization, so that domestic applied developments more often find their application in various fields.

"In general, it is necessary to analyze and, if necessary, to update the indicators of the Development Strategy of the University until 2030 and the Research Development Program for 2021-2025," Alikhan Smailov said.

The meeting also included a report on some of the achievements of students and graduates of the university. In particular, it was talked about high results of NU iGEM team in the annual global competition iGEM on synthetic biology, the publication of scientific articles in leading world journals, as well as the implementation of the student initiative "University Bridge", aimed at sharing experiences and creating a network of young researchers across Kazakhstan.

At the same time, the participants discussed a number of organizational issues and the implementation of investment and construction projects. The Prime Minister presented a project of reconstruction of the administrative building in Almaty, which will be used as a school of artificial intelligence at the university, plans to increase accommodation in student dormitories, and other initiatives.

The National Bank Chairman Galymzhan Pirmatov, Deputy Prime Minister – Minister of Finance Yerulan Zhamaubayev, First Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration Timur Suleimenov, heads of several other government agencies, President of Nazarbayev University JSC Shigeo Katsu and other members of the Board of Trustees participated in the meeting.

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