Malika Toqmadi is a doctoral researcher at University College London (UCL). She holds an M.A. in Politics and Security in Central Asia from the OSCE Academy in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan and an M.A. in Global and European Security from the University of Geneva, Switzerland. Malika is a co-founder of PaperLab, a public policy research center based in Kazakhstan. Previously, she was a visiting scholar at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), Oslo, Norway and the George Washington University, Washington, DC, and worked with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the World Bank. She co-edited Kazakhstan’s Shadow Report to the UN on the Observance of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) and has been a contributing author of the Freedom House's “Nations in Transit” in 2018-2021.