Vivienne Westbrook


is a Cultural Historian, a Professor of English and Cultural Studies and the Research Director in the College of Humanities and Education at KIMEP University in Kazakhstan. She is the Chair of the Environmental Research Association and the General Editor of Oceans, Seas and Shorelines: a Natural and Cultural Environmental History (Routledge, 2023-25). She is an Honorary Adjunct Professor in Human Sciences and English and Cultural Studies, and a Senior Research Fellow at the Oceans Institute, the University of Western Australia. She is also a member of the British Psychological Society and Lady Margaret Beaufort Fellow at St. John’s College, Cambridge.

JeongWon Bourdais Park​​

holds a doctorate from the London School of Economics and Political Science and an M.Phil in Environmental Policy from the University of Cambridge (U.K), and is currently serving as Associate Professor at the Department of International Relations and Regional Studies at KIMEP University. She has written two books entitled Regional Environmental Politics in Northeast Asia: Conflict and Cooperation, and Identity, Policy and Prosperity: Border nationality of the Korean diaspora and regional development in Northeast China. ​

Kristopher White​​

is a geographer and Associate Professor in KIMEP University’s College of Social Sciences. Over the course of the past two decades, much of his research efforts have dealt in some way with what we might consider “the environment” in particular interrelationships between humans and the biophysical environment. Current research activities include a continuation of Aral Sea-related projects as well as social and cultural issues related to the snow leopard in Kazakhstan. ​

Zhamilya Utarbayeva​​

holds a Candidate of Sciences Degree in Political Science from Kazakh State National University named by Al-Farabi. She has been working in the field of projects and research on environment and sustainable development, including work in the environment & development projects of the World Bank, the European Commission, UNDP. She was one of the founders of Network of Experts for Sustainable Development in Central Asia (NESDCA). She has more than a dozen publications on the problems of sustainable development and ecological consciousness.​

Liza Rybina ​

holds a degree in Physics and doctorate in Business Administration. She conducted research projects on the climate change when she worked at the Institute of Hydrometeorology. For over 20 years she has been working as a faculty member at the KIMEP University teaching a range of courses in marketing, management, and tourism. Current research interests include cultural and heritage tourism, social and sustainable marketing. She is the member of professional associations and serves at the Editorial board of the Eurasian Journal of Business and Management.​

Amanda M. Al-Raba’a ​

is an Assistant Professor of Modern Languages and Translation Studies at KIMEP University. She gained her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2019. Her recent publications focus on a wide range of Middle Eastern issues, from the impact of war on the environment through to gendered translation issues in a variety of interpretative contexts. She is the Chair of the Cultural Research Association and Co-ordinator of Language, Culture, Environment at KIMEP University.​

Maria Baideldinova

Maria Baideldinova holds an LL.M from Christian-Albrechts University of Kiel (Germany) and a PhD from Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna (Italy). She is a professor of private law at KIMEP University (Kazakhstan) and the author of the first Animal Law course in the ex-Soviet space. As member of the Chamber of legal consultants KazBar and a pro-bono legal consultant of Kazakhstan’s animal protection NGO “KARE-Zabota”, Maria promotes the reform of animal-related legislation in Kazakhstan.