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The study of the authoritative European ranking «Academic Ranking of World Universities-European Standard» («ARES») has ranked Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (KazNU) among the leader of higher educational institutions in Kazakhstan and Central Asian region. With its performance of «АА», KazNU ranks among the leading European universities and is significantly ahead of all other Kazakhstani universities, which were rated as «А+» and below. The ARES ranking of universities, which is conducted by the European Scientific and Industrial Chamber, takes into account such indicators as high quality performance, research and innovation activities, and graduates’ employability. Special attention is paid to the ability of universities to provide students with professional knowledge and competencies, participation in research activities, as well as communication with future employers.

This high performance ranking was awarded to KazNU for the development of its innovative international research and educational programs. The university was among the first in Kazakhstan and in Central Asia to introduce its comprehensive program on sustainable development. It focuses on training of the leaders of tomorrow with the deep professional knowledge and practical competences of sustainable development issues, Green Economy, and alternative energy. The graduate students of KazNU have regularly worked on case studies and field projects jointly with national businesses, social entrepreneurship groups, NGOs and international organizations. For example, the students-led multi-year project “Biking Habitat in Smart City” has focused on integration and popularization of bicycling among school and students youth in Almaty city and it has won numerous awards.

In addition, university’s faculty and students have focused on working on projects in building sustainable peace in the region. KazNU-led flagship Model UN-New Silk Way (MUN NSW) program has instigated a several rounds of productive discussions on developing educational, social and economic foundation in building peace in Afghanistan attracting not only students, but also high-ranking officials to participate in the lively youth-led debates and provided MUN training to more than 500 Afghan students.

The «ARES» International Rating has been conducted since 2011 by country and it ranks universities whose activities comply with European standards. This year 96 higher educational institutions of Kazakhstan took part in it. The results of «ARES» are taken into account by the world’s leading rating agencies.

Dr. Rafis Abazov, Director of Ban Ki-moon Institute for Sustainable Development at KazNU highlighted that the work on the UN-initiated Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) has helped the university to develop an innovative and more focused research and international collaboration agenda in transforming KazNU into a world-class research university. This also increases its competitiveness in the global scientific and educational space, which contributes to its successful promotion in international rankings.