Central Asia Business and Economics Education Project


Client: United States Agency for International Development


The Business and Economics Education (BEE) Project in Central Asia encouraged educational institutions to be more responsive to business needs while promoting government education reforms in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan. CARANA tapped Central Asian firms and NGOs to support education reform through cost sharing and direct linkages with universities. During the life of the project, nearly 100 separate contributors paid for 29 percent of the cost of the project, demonstrating a strong vested interest in education reform.

BEE built on the accomplishments of a previous CARANA-managed USAID project, EdNet, which had established a Regional Education Network Association (REGENA) to support business and economics education programs. To accelerate the transfer of international education standards to Central Asia universities and position REGENA as a source of international know-how and linkages, BEE helped REGENA establish partnerships with seven universities, businesses, and industry organizations in Russia, the Netherlands, Canada, Slovenia, Estonia, and Kyrgyzstan. With guidance from BEE, REGENA also teamed with the Eurasia Foundation and the Economics Education Research Consortium to implement the Central Asia Applied Research Network Program.

B&EE also piloted 12 university career, entrepreneurship, and marketing research centers, as well as regional internship and scholarship programs. It set up a regional education association for advocacy and faculty training, university advisory boards, and a major fundraising campaign.