Khushbakht Hojiev

Research themes
  • Environmental and climate change
  • Development Politics
Research countries
  • Kyrgyzstan

2008: MA in Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Magdeburg, Germany

2006: MA in Political Science, OSCE Academy, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

2005: Diploma in International Relations, Russian-Tajik (Slavic) University of Tajikistan

Thesis title

Conflicts in Fergana Valley: Identity and Social Dynamics along Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan borders

Thesis abstract

This PhD-research is concerned with study of conflicts in Fergana Valley of Central Asia (CA). Building on the background of divergent interpretations of conflicts in this region, it is argued that the approaches aimed at providing simplistic causal explanation of conflicts up-to-date fall short in depicting full picture of conflict processes. Hence, it is suggested that conflict analysis in CA should be based on conflict dynamics concept (Obershall 1997) and should concentrate on process dimension of conflict studies. It is believed that the question of “what causes violent conflict” may be of less heuristic value than the question of “how violent conflict erupts” in understanding the conflict, its prerequisites, scope and consequences. Hence, systematic investigation of conflict processes that is free of frames of historical determinism is necessary to understand conflict in such areas as Fergana valley as well as to address the puzzle of variation - how inter-communal conflict evolves into violence and riots in one place (such as Osh city of Kyrgyzstan) and does not in the other – that should be the central aspect of conflict studies in CA. To lead processual conflict analysis, the research will be focused on the issue of mobilization in violent conflict. To understand the mobilization in violent conflict we will employ the concept of framing that provides a perspective breaking the longstanding divide between the instrumentalist and interpretative approaches in conflict studies (among other areas).

To investigate patterns of mobilization at the level of inter-communal conflicts in Ferghana valley of CA, two most similar cases with different outcomes (conflict containment and escalation) shall be studied in the field. In this framework local conflicts and social relations in two multiethnic districts of Ferghana Valley – Leylek district of Batken province in Kyrgyzstan and Spitamen district of Sogd province in Tajikistan – are to be investigated during the field study. Following the field research, comparative analysis of findings of the two cases shall be conducted in order to determine the structure and the process of mobilization that takes place in its scope during given violent conflict. This, in turn, shall hopefully propose another perspective for better understanding conflicts and the structure of their escalation in Ferghana Valley of CA.


Keywords: Ferghana Valley/Central Asia; conflict; mobilization; inter-ethnic tensions

Doctoral research funded by

BMZ (via DAAD)

Supervisors of
doctoral work

Prof. Dr Conrad Schetter

Prof. Dr. Klaus Schlichte

Advisor at ZEF

Dr. Katja Mielke

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Khushbakht Hojiev

Junior Researcher

Political and Cultural Change