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Women and Social Policy in Central Asia: Motherhood, Care Economy, Education and Inequality [English, Russian]  
Xeniya Prilutskaya (Bern University)
Tatyana Rezvushkina (Buketov University (Karaganda, Kazakhstan))
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Xeniya Prilutskaya (Bern University)
Anastassiya Lipovka (Almaty Management University)
Gender Studies
401 (Floor 4)
Sunday 9 June, -
Time zone: Asia/Almaty


Many states in the world are aimed at respecting the rights and freedoms of women. Central Asia is no exception. However, in the Central Asian states, discussions are mainly conducted around two problems: domestic violence and the poor representation of women in management, but issues such as unpaid domestic work, caring for children and elderly relatives are not problematized. This is reflected in the state’s social policy (the content of programs, road maps, concepts, strategies to support socially vulnerable segments of the population).

Since the early 2000s, Central Asian governments have been implementing large-scale reforms in the field of social policy aimed at reducing poverty, unemployment, and supporting motherhood and childhood. Global demographic trends, including an ageing population and an increase in the retirement age, are also characteristic of the Central Asian states, where, in turn, there is also an increase in the birth rate. This has already influenced the increase in demand for care services and at the same time increased the burden on women of working age and created the need to create a care economy. Developing a care economy is a major challenge for Central Asian countries, directly impacting economic indicators such as poverty, income, employment, economic growth and access to education.

We invite all interested researchers to discuss the social policies of Central Asian states regarding women, mothers and their children. We will talk about how, for example, in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, households have an increasing demand for care services and the burden on such an underdeveloped economic sector as care is growing (paper will be presented in English). We will discuss how mothers in Kazakhstan face difficulties in hiring nannies (paper will be presented in English) and therefore are reviving traditional childcare practices (paper will be presented in Russian), how the education system does not consider regional gender disparities (paper will be presented in Russian), and whether a fair distribution of unpaid domestic labour is possible.

Accepted papers:

Session 1 Sunday 9 June, 2024, -