John Smith Trust launches new fellowship programme

17 Jul 2023 We’re inviting exceptional young professionals and change-makers from 12 countries in Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia to apply for our next fellowship programme. This will take place online from August 2023 to February 2024 and includes a two-week residential programme in the UK.
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Mentoring offers huge benefits for professional growth

11 Jul 2023 Our new mentoring programme is a unique opportunity for all John Smith Fellows to tap into the wealth of expertise and experience within our network – as both mentors and mentees.
part of a ceiling of a traditional Kazakh tent with decoration

The unfolding conversations on colonial legacies and how to counter them

16 Jun 2023 Speaking up about repression during the Soviet Union’s colonial rule is empowering communities to come to terms with historical trauma. 
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“We encourage citizens to speak up”

05 May 2023 To tackle corruption effectively, Moldova needs both transparent governance and engaged citizens who know their rights and can hold the authorities to account
A man wearing a jacket sitting in a TV studio with a camera behind him

Moldova: on the frontline of Russia’s misinformation war

24 Apr 2023 Moldova is facing a barrage of Russian propaganda, misinformation and fake news. Alexei Tulbure, a media commentator and director of Moldova’s Oral History Institute, is working to counter this threat 
Three women at a table, one of them wearing green jumper, others wearing black. The woman in green jumper is talking and the other two are listening.

The value of leadership networks in times of crises

18 Apr 2023 Fellows from across Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia are rethinking governance and leadership in the context of ongoing global crises
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Ukrainian deputy defence minister: dignity comes from knowledge

31 Mar 2023 Andriy Shevchenko, a John Smith Fellow, has been appointed deputy defence minister of Ukraine, a role through which he will contribute to the defence of his nation against the Russian invasion.
People standing at a desk with a screen behind them saying The John Smith Trust Network Meeting and Yuksalish above the screen

Central Asian Fellows in Tashkent: strengthening regional cooperation

24 Mar 2023 The geopolitical impacts of Russia’s war on Ukraine have opened up new opportunities for regional development in Central Asia, creating a renewed drive for cooperation between countries in the region
A man holding a microphone, talking, next to a screen and a sign iPark.

Can technology unlock future jobs in Tajikistan?

10 Mar 2023 Jahongir Aminjanov, a John Smith Trust Fellow (2019), wants to encourage technology to address a lot of social and economic issues in the country, like youth unemployment. He sees the future – especially after Covid – where technology really can have an impact in the development of Tajik society. Whether it’s education, healthcare, finance or anything else.
A woman with long dark hair sits at a table with a laptop in front of her, holding a mobile phone to her ear, smiling. She wears a white shirt.

Public-private partnerships create social impact in Kyrgyzstan

03 Mar 2023 Albina Rakhmidinova, a lawyer and John Smith Trust Fellow (2019), was among the first people to see the potential for public-private partnerships (PPPs) – collaborations between government agencies and private-sector companies in Kyrgyzstan.
A child holding up a sign 'Stop war in Ukraine'

Statement on Ukraine from the John Smith Trust

24 Feb 2023 We express our ongoing support for the people of Ukraine who are defending their freedom and we continue to support all efforts to end Russia’s unprovoked invasion.
Men and women in a large room, sitting on chairs in a circle

Moldova: opportunities in the midst of crisis?

22 Feb 2023 As the anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine arrives, neighbouring Moldova is at a pivotal moment and faces a struggle to defend itself against Russian aggression.
A photo of a cafe with a woman serving a customer at the bar. A blackboard on the left with 'Sustainables' written on it.

Central Asia: reimagining business for social good

21 Feb 2023 John Smith Fellows Kumush Atayeva and Malika Sharipova joined environmental campaigner and entrepreneur Emma Shaw on 9 February to explore ways to implement and improve CSR.
A woman with long brown hair facing cutting something on a chopping board and a man with curly here standing by the cooker and cooking

Who’s responsible for challenging gender norms?

30 Jan 2023 Those working to promote gender equality must engage both men and women in the conversation, according to Fellows attending a workshop hosted by the John Smith Trust
Woman tending to a row of bee hives in the forest

Insights and pioneering in corporate social responsibility

28 Nov 2022 Ten years ago, corporate social responsibility (CSR) was a term largely unheard-of in Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan, but that is changing thanks to two John Smith Trust Fellows
plastic debris littering the muddy shores of a lake

Climate campaigning with Johnny Chatterton: “When small fish turn the tables”

07 Nov 2022 Campaigning expert Johnny Chatterton and John Smith Fellows give key insights on how to hold the powerful to account with limited resources
Woman speaking at UN briefing

Women fight for occupational gender equality in Kazakhstan

27 Oct 2022 How do you change a law that’s almost a century old and based on gender inequality?
Empty wooden chair in middle of shelled street

Fellows seek justice for civilian victims of Russia’s war  

26 Jul 2022 While still faced with the ongoing horrors of the war in Ukraine, Oleksandr Vodyannikov has turned his attention to compensation for civilian victims, and bringing in international support
A woman waving a Ukrainian flag

Perspectives on the war in Ukraine with Fiona Hill

22 Jul 2022 Since the start of the war, the John Smith Trust has been bringing together its network of change-makers and leaders in the former Soviet Union, to discuss how best to support Ukraine
Young people in park

How to encourage a global generation of change makers and problem solvers

08 Jul 2022 As a student Saida Ibrahimava found there weren’t enough places for young people to exchange ideas, learn from and collaborate with each other. Her mission is to change this for the next generation of young leaders