What is Big Think?  

We are Big Idea Hunters…

We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

Big Think Features:

12,000+ Expert Videos

1

Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers

2

Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge

3

Big Think’s Edge learning platform for career mentorship and professional development provides engaging and actionable courses delivered by the people who are shaping our future.

Find out more
Close

Kazakhstan on the Rise: An Investment Bridge Between Russia and the U.S.

July 12, 2014, 3:00 PM
Kazakh_rise

What's the Latest?

Face it, most Americans (and probably not just Americans) only think of Borat when Kazakhstan gets brought up. Whether that's testament to Sascha Baron Cohen's comedic prowess or a telling sign of our international ignorance, I'll leave for someone else to decide. 

But now, eight years after the film, Kazakhstan is striving to redefine itself to the outside world. Almaty, the country's largest city, is one of three finalists for the 2022 Winter Olympics (1 of 2 if you believe Oslo is likely to drop out). Long-time president Nursultan Nazarbayev unveiled two years ago a plan bent on boosting Kazakhstan onto the list of the world's top 30 most developed countries by 2050. Finally, the nation's energy-focused deal-making has positioned itself as a bridge between Russian and American interests in Central Asia.

What's the Big Idea?

Dina Gusovsky of CNBC has penned an illuminating report on the oil-rich former Soviet republic and the ways in which it has attracted investment from both Russia and the United States. Kazakhstan signed on to Vladimir Putin's Eurasian Economic Union this year while at the same time easing restrictions for potential American partners to enter into the picture. 

From Gusovsky's piece:

The Kazakhs "are making themselves the middlemen and creating a bridge between Russia and the U.S.", said Edward Mermelstein, an attorney who works as an adviser on cross-border investments in the former Soviet Union. "In a sense, becoming the Switzerland of the former Soviet Union."

Gusovksy notes that similar violence to that which occurred earlier this year in Ukraine could pop up in the future if tensions with Russia were to flare up. This presents the most glaring risk to Kazakhstan's budding and ambitious plan for growth. Recent allegations of human rights violations could also prove a sticky subject to dance around, though that sort of thing tends not to derail massive investment in countries like China.

Kazakhstan appears to be one of the top nations to watch in the coming decades. Whether it will still be called Kazakhstan then is still to be determined. 

Keep Reading at CNBC

Photo credit: yevgeniy11 / Shutterstock

 

Kazakhstan on the Rise: An ...

Newsletter: Share: