Central Asia and Caucasus Research and Training Initiative

The Central Asia and Caucasus Research and Training Initiative (CARTI) aims to contribute to the internationalization of scholarship and development of indigenous capacities for independent and critical academic work in the social sciences and humanities in the region of post-Soviet countries of South Caucasus and Central Asia, Afghanistan and Mongolia.

The program targets scholars in the early stages of their postgraduate training and recent graduates of doctoral programs and provides support and training for original research by university-based academics in their home academic environment. CARTI helps motivated academics during crucial early stages of their careers to gain critical competence with the foundational and current scholarship and develop active involvement in international intellectual exchange and debate in their subjects. With the support of CARTI, the Fellows engage state-of-the-art resources, theories, methodologies and approaches to their research and teaching in the subjects and areas of importance to the social transformations underway in the region.

CARTI is committed to enrichment and innovation in higher education in the humanities and social sciences and emphasizes the significance of original and critical scholarly work in the development of university teaching and curricula.

CARTI Junior and Senior Fellowships

Junior Fellowships support individuals in early stages of their formal doctoral studies (such as aspirantura) and focus on developing ideas and skills for original academic research in the social sciences and humanities. Junior Fellowships provide a medium for testing and challenging the theories, methods, and assumptions in the core of individual research agendas, while at the same time guiding and assisting the fellows in their first independent research efforts.

Senior Fellowships are open to young scholars who have recently received their first Doctoral (e.g. Candidate of Science) degrees in the social sciences and humanities from the universities in their home countries/region. The Fellowships support innovative and critical research agendas and development of international research and teaching partnerships with special emphasis on publication of scholarly work, active contribution to public debate and integrating the new scholarly thinking and outcomes and experience of research into teaching.  

The program provides fellows with the opportunities for:

  • enhancing the familiarity with the state-of-the-art in their disciplines and association with the current thinking in their fields, by improving access to seminal scholarship, relevant international expertise and contemporary debates within the international scholarly community;
  • conducting individual and collaborative original, innovative and high quality research with critical discussion and peer feedback on the research process and outcomes, enhanced by advanced training in and practice of research design, contemporary methodologies and tools of academic research and academic writing;
  • applying research experience and outcomes to development of teaching and curriculum at the region's universities and promoting research work as integral part of students' learning;
  • peer collaboration and mobility on regional and international level;
  • development of skills and venues for publicizing scholarly work.

CARTI fellowships are awarded for a period of 24 months, with ongoing review and evaluation procedures in place. The fellowships typically offer:

  • funding for research activities, communication, access to necessary equipment, materials and resources;
  • expenses for exchange visits between the fellows and the international scholars;
  • support for teaching and curriculum development activities (Senior fellows);  
  • fellowship stipend.

International Scholars

All CARTI fellows work in a collaborative partnership with individually appointed CARTI international scholars (mentors). International scholars are advanced academics, prominent in the fields of scholarship of concern to the Fellows' projects, representing leading universities outside the program's target region. International scholars provide guidance and facilitate discussion and access to resources necessary for the successful development of the research project. CARTI supports exchange visits between the fellows and international scholars - all CARTI fellows are eligible and expected to spend up to one academic semester at the home institution of the international scholar, and host the international scholar at their home academic department during the term of the fellowship. International scholars can be identified by the applicants or proposed by CARTI.

CARTI organizes a series of project review and training activities for the selected candidates prior to the formal start of the fellowship and offers an academic program consisting of a summer school and other seminar, discussion and training activities during the period of the fellowship.

Eligibility Criteria

The program is open to individuals who are nationals and residents of one of the following countries: Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

Candidates for the Junior Fellowships must hold a diploma of higher education (of at least a Specialist or Masters level or the equivalent) and be formally registered at a Doctoral studies program (a Ph.D. or equivalent program, such as aspirantura, leading towards a first Doctoral, such as a Candidate of Science degree) in the humanities and social sciences in the region.Please note: The PhD enrollment requirement may be waived for applicants from Afghanistan and Turkmenistan. Interested individuals should inquire with the program administration prior to submitting the application.

Candidates for the Senior Fellowships must possess a first Doctoral or equivalent (such as a Candidate of Science) degree in the humanities or social sciences, awarded not earlier than 2006 at the time of the application to CARTI and hold full-time teaching positions at departments of social sciences or humanities at university level institutions in the program region.

Fellowships are awarded through an open competition based on an academic review of the applications, consisting of an application form, project proposal, curriculum vitae, academic reference letters and supporting documents.


Interested individuals are invited to complete the online Application Form and submit all supporting documents in electronic format via the Open Society Foundations’ Online Application System: https://oas.soros.org/oas.

The Online Application System will be open for applications from August 1, 2012. The deadline for submitting on-line applications is 1 November 2012, 5:00 pm Central European Time.

Please consult the CARTI Call for Applications and Guide for Applicants downloadable on the left for details of the application and selection process. HESP program staff is available for further consultations.

Contact Information

Open Society Foundations
International Higher Education Support Program
Central Asia and Caucasus Research and Training Initiative
Október 6. u.12.
Budapest 1051 Hungary
Tel: +36 1 882 3854
Fax: +36 1 882 3112
Email: carti@osi.hu

Oleksandr Shtokvych, Senior Program Manager
Email: oshtokvych@osi.hu
Tel.: (36-1) 882-6153

Edit Köblös, Program Coordinator
Email: ekoblos@osi.hu
Tel.: (36-1) 882-3854