Tugan Qala: Creating a Friendly Urban Environment in Single-Industry Towns

The Tugan Qala project, implemented by Eurasian Resources Group (ERG), is empowering citizens to shape and improve their towns in Kazakhstan. The project is being implemented in five settlements where the company’s enterprises operate. The aim of the Tugan Qala project is to create a friendly and cosy urban environment in single-industry towns, which are often associated with industrial dullness. The unique aspect of the project lies in the implementation mechanism: citizens offer suggestions on objects they believe are missing in the city, prepare projects and estimates, and choose which projects to fund through voting on the Tugan Qala website. This horizontal democracy empowers citizens, fosters civic responsibility and helps them take constructive action to improve their cities. Funding is provided from ERG funds, with limits for infrastructure and event projects being increased to 12 million and 4 million tenge respectively. Tugan Qala is already having a tangible impact on the civic activity of Kazakhstanis and, with the increased funding, even more, people can participate in improving their towns.