The Role of Public Management in Addressing Workforce Development Gaps in Kazakhstan's Oil & Gas Sector


  • Lukas Brun Duke University (USA)
  • Aida Urazaliyeva


The “triple-helix” workforce development model, in which governments, private industry, and educational institutions collaborate to ensure the relevance of human capital investments, has long been a feature of advanced industrial economies. However, the model has been less frequently adopted in post-Soviet states, leading to significant gaps between educational outputs and industry needs. This paper reports the results of a study investigating factors leading to the improved competitiveness of Kazakhstan’s oil & gas industry. More specifically, the paper reports the findings of stakeholder interviews and roundtable discussions held for the industry in Kazakhstan regarding the nature and challenges of workforce development in the country and provides a comparative case of successful workforce development practices in the industry. Limited coordination between the demands of industry and the supply of technical training by domestic educational institutions underlies the constraints to the competitiveness of the country’s oil & gas industry. The paper finds that the state and public managers have an important role in redefining the parameters of educational training in the country by acting as an intermediary between industry and education to close the gaps between industry needs and current educational curricula.

Key Words: workforce development; triple-helix model; emerging economies; oil and gas

Author Biography

Aida Urazaliyeva

Former Senior Research Analyst with the National Analytical Centre in Kazakhstan (2009-2018)