Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan have both just completed their first power transitions since independence. This panel/roundtable will discuss elite and bureaucratic adaptations to political change. New leadership and new hierarchies of power will pose new challenges to the key actors in both countries. Panelists will present their views on several questions: 1) elite and bureaucratic evolution in both countries, including how these cohorts are forged; 2) changes in leadership styles from the top after the two political transitions from Karimov and Nazarbayev; 3) evolution of institutions and political and elite social networks; 4) relations between leaders and bureaucrats post-transition: hierarchal, cooperative, or antagonistic? 5) midterm and future expectations for decision making processes in both countries.