WeAlmaty was a three-year initiative that aimed to help the city of Almaty to realise its 2020 development vision around culture, business and active citizenship by supporting local authority leaders to work with civil society. It supported new forms of cooperation and joint action between civil society organisations, local authorities and the private sector that will help Almaty to fulfil its goal to develop into a ‘smart city’.

WeAlmaty was designed and run by a coalition made up of the British Council, the Kazakh-British Technical University, Almaty Akimat and the Almaty Development Centre, and funded by a grant from the European Union. The project worked with universities, creative and social entrepreneurs, and citizens of Almaty.

The project had four main strands of activity:

  • A series of regular dialogue forums which created a sustainable platform to bring together civil society, local authorities and the private sector and encouraged them to take part in discussions and networking; 
  • A capacity building programme which trained civil society leaders and local authority staff to help them to work with each other more effectively. It also introduced them to international best practice in the field of participatory planning and public-private partnerships; 
  • A challenge fund that  supported citizen-led projects that stimulated local economic growth and created benefit for the public (for example, area regeneration, new business incubators or new creative hubs);
  • A dissemination campaign shared the experience and best practice acquired through the project’s activities in Almaty with the local authority and civil society leaders from Shymkent and Nur-Sultan.


The objective of our dissemination programme was to engage civil society, local government officials, informal citizen groups and social and creative entrepreneurs outside of Almaty, elsewhere in Kazakhstan who might wish to be inspired by, participate in or even launch their own civic enterprise, in partnership with civil society organisations or public agencies.


This webpage was created and maintained with the financial support of the European Union. Its contents are the sole responsibility of the British Council, the Kazakh-British Technical University, Almaty Akimat and the Almaty Development Centre and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.