under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan
Address of the President to the people of Kazakhstan
Third Modernization of Kazakhstan
"Only those nations who manage to set the future goals and proceed resolutely facing the challenges,
instead of sitting on the hedge and waiting, are the winners."
KazISS Director Zarema Shaukenova
The article "Bolashakka Bagdar: Ruhani zhangyru" of the President Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan reveals the very core of the “third modernization” having elaborated the main points made in the Address to the Nation of Kazakhstan televised on January 31, 2017.
Kazakhstan has got on the path of its progressive development. So far, the nation has accumulated considerable experience in the socio-economic and political reforms. Yet, comprehensive modernization of values is required to underpin these political and economic changes.
Modernization shall be understood as alteration of the core of the object in its entity and not just addition of new elements. There are no ready-made recipes for modernization. Most often, modernization is associated with Westernization although it is not the same thing. Westernization without modernization proved inconsistent. Modernization without Westernization proved short-lived. The catching-up development strategies are even more difficult to fulfill today because the West has moved so far away into a new information era. There is only one option left and this is that of modernization in “national way” that can be conducted through accelerated enhancement of human potential.
Today, the task of modernization is not unique for developing countries. Developed countries are also undergoing constant changes especially in terms of the search for new optimal models of development. For example, economic doctrine of the welfare state that emerged after the revolution in Russia in 1917 amidst the confrontation of the two systems, when the Western governments had to adopt the policies that were considerably closer to the left. The Keynesian model of so-called “social” capitalism emerged as well as regulated market economy and state capitalism. In the 1980's and 1990's, this model was mainly rejected in favor of Reaganomics and Thatcherism, Tony Blair’s Nu Labor and "Third Way" of the New Democrats under the Clinton administration.
The idea was that the state should motivate. Security became the key factor to measure the success of any society. The values of success and self-sufficiency, efficiency and effectiveness, resilience and competitiveness reemerged. Education turned into a ultimate target for millions of the young all over the world.
The nest change is the crisis of liberalism associated with the collapse of multiculturalism in Europe against the background of the migration and refugees inflows from the Middle East Asia, North Africa. Europe, with its liberal values, found itself vulnerable to a new globalization when freedom of movement, of technology exchange, capital and investment as well as production turned to be the unprecedented scale of movement of people from one part of the planet to another. The economic inequality and discrepancies of development between the poor and the rich countries and regions turned out to be so great that no legal or geographical barriers can prevent people from fleeing hunger or imminent death. Thus, there are the consequences such as Brexit, weakening of the European Union, terrorism in the heart of Europe.
However, human nature is not only about rationality. We need ethical, moral or spiritual foundations. As for the cultural and national consciousness in Kazakhstan, it has been conserved. The experience of the past or, rather, misinterpretation of the past events have been predominant attitude for far too long.
Yet, in the world today, the energy of ideas and values is the leading factor of social progress and economic activity. What are the main drivers of our society that have been so thoroughly identified by President Nazarbayev in his article? These are the demand for modernization, confidence about the unique nation’s path, appreciation of the own achievements and the experience of the other successful nations, desire to make a contribution of global significance, strengthening the role of the Kazakh language.
Modernization of values and attitudes, according to President Nazarbayev, means eradication of the rudiments of the old consciousness and archaic patterns of behavior. A comprehensive modernization platform for the entire social sciences and humanities is needed so that researchers, experts and academics could implement projects of practical significance. Thus, the President’s article mentions some of them; gradual transition to the Latin alphabet, “100 New Textbooks in Kazakh”, “Modern Kazakh Culture in Global World”, and “100 New Personalities of Kazakhstan” projects as well as the "Tugan Zher" Program,
The President's article is a response to the expectations of people who want to live in a progressive nation confident about its future. History gives us a unique chance to build it with new values and ideas.