The Central Asia Research Group of IAMO was established in 2019 as a cross-departmental network of scientists conducting research on interdisciplinary topics related to agricultural transformation processes in the five post-Soviet Central Asian countries, namely Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.
In all five Central Asian countries, agricultural production is a major source of household and national income, a factor of social stability and decisive for national food security. Meanwhile, the sustainability of agricultural production in all of these countries is being threatened by an increasing demand for food, declining levels of productivity growth and environmental spillovers from intensive resource use. Climate change is projected to increase yield volatility and thus producer risk as well as food insecurity in the region.
Following the independence from Soviet Union in 1991, the five Central Asian governments opted for diverging development paths and thus very different approaches in dealing with these issues. In studying and assessing these different patterns of agricultural development in the region, the Central Asia Research Group promotes state-of-the art multidisciplinary research targeting, aiming not only at a scientific audience but also stakeholders from politics and business. The research interests and expertise of the Research Group encompass a wide range of topics, including natural resource management, supply chain transformation, risk management, agricultural policies and institutions, climate change and migration.