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American political scientist Karl Deutsch, in the sixties of the last century, noted that "the critical issue of modernization is not structural changes in the economy, but changes in the value system."

The third modernization of Kazakhstan poses large-scale tasks to reform the economy towards innovation. This requires a lot of innovations.

Accordingly, modernization of consciousness should support a new modernization of the economy. And here there is a logical question: is the socio-cultural environment of Kazakhstan's society ready for such a flow of innovations? After all, they will make many demands on the society's ability to adapt flexibly, the level of education, the quality of science, entrepreneurial and civic activity of the population.

The cultural specificity of the society, the national mentality is an important factor that can both facilitate the effective promotion of reforms and hinder it. For centuries, habitual patterns of behavior and values ​​have been developing in society, at a certain moment they begin to hamper its development and it is necessary to get rid of them decisively. What are the socio-cultural barriers that stand in the way of successful modernization of Kazakhstan?

Among them, one can mention the rootedness of traditional consciousness, characteristic of countries with a high share of the agrarian sector. Last but not least, this depends on the quality of education in the countryside.

This and the still existing facts of corruption and protectionism, the practice of using family and personal ties in finding work and moving up the career in our society. On the way, there may also be survivals of tribalism and regionalism. A certain degree of distrust between the population and the authorities should be noted as one of the barriers. Nevertheless, active work is carried out in this direction to increase the transparency and accountability of state bodies to the society.

Therefore, not only the population but also the state apparatus itself, which should become the locomotive of modernization thinking, must be subjected to mental modernization.

Obstacles to modernization can be actively imposed recently, alien to our mentality, openly extremist interpretations of religion, which mislead citizens, advocating a return to archaic forms of social relations. Such missionaries primarily deny any reforms and innovations, including them as sinful deeds.

At the same time, it is impossible to underestimate the potential of the nation's mental resource in the implementation of modernization processes. In the mental basis of the people there are values ​​and traditions that, on the contrary, can become drivers of modernization.

On the one hand, the traditions of the people create the necessary framework of society, promote cohesion on the basis of common, habitual values. On the other hand, the historical memory of the people introduces the awareness of the need for change at critical moments of development, on which not only determines the place of the nation on a global scale, but also further historical destiny.

In this context, the existence of the traditions of cohesion in Kazakhstan, the values ​​of unity and harmony, tolerance, openness to innovation and at the same time of moderate pragmatism creates a strong basis for implementing reforms.

Look at how successfully Kazakhstani people get into any environment, hitting an unusual social and cultural surrounding, for example, studying or working abroad. This is one of our competitive advantages. As the descendants of the nomadic civilization, we are able to stand firmly on our feet in any turn of fate.

But still this is not enough today. Given all the factors listed above, we have to conduct the process of national modernization not only in the technological and economic aspects, but also in the ideological plane. We need to modernize thinking. This is a deep program article of the President “Bolashakka Bagdar – Ruhani Zhangyru”, which was published in April this year.

An important factor in the success of reforms should be the understanding and acceptance by all Kazakhstanis of the goal and objectives of "Ruhani zhangyru". Sociological studies of our Institute show that 82% of the country's population today support the need for change. But now, not only support is important, but also practical implementation of the changes that must begin in the life of every Kazakhstani.

As psychologists know, all changes ultimately come down to changes in human behavior. All our fears, limitations, unwillingness are in our heads. Therefore, the realization of personal goals depends only on ourselves, on how much we perceive and understand the challenges ahead, how much we are motivated to achieve success and what exactly each of us has undertaken for positive changes in our own lives.

The key directions of these changes are well described and recommended in the article of Elbasy. As Mahatma Gandhi said: "Be the change that you want to see in the world” .

Gani Nygymetov

- Director of the Institute of Eurasian Integration

Information generator: primeminister.kz

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