2021 2021: Professor Dilshod Achilov named U.S. Fulbright Scholar
Professor Dilshod Achilov named U.S. Fulbright Scholar

Achilov will take residency at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University

Dilshod Achilov, Ph.D. in the Middle East during fieldwork in 2019.

The Fulbright Program recently announced that Dilshod Achilov, Ph.D. (political science) is the recipient of a Fulbright research fellowship for residence in Kazakhstan during the spring semester of 2022. Achilov had previously been selected for residence in the spring of 2021, but was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Achilov’s research project, “Assessing the Effectiveness of De-Radicalization Strategies in Central Asia” seeks to study the effectiveness of security and de-radicalization policies and initiatives put forth by the state in the last decade, as well as comparatively analyze the effects of such efforts on dynamics of democratization and civil society in Central Asia.

“I was very excited to find out I was chosen for this prestigious award,” said Achilov. “I wanted to go to the region while continuing my research on the area’s security politics.”

Achilov is a well-regarded scholar of the Middle East and Central Asian politics. His research on contentious politics as a pathway for advancing democratization in Central Asia and the Middle East, specifically comparative democratization and counterterrorism, has been extensively published in reputable  peer-reviewed publications, textbooks, and other academic research platforms. Achilov is a recipient of many research grants that funded multiple research fieldworks.

Achilov, who joined UMass Dartmouth in 2016, will be working with students and colleagues in the Philosophy and Political Science departments at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (KazNU), the country’s oldest and largest research university.

“In a way, I’m looking forward to acting as an academic ambassador of the United States and contributing to the liberal arts education in Kazakhstan. At the same time, I aim to learn from  my Kazakhstani students and colleagues, so that I can bring those experiences back to my students at UMass Dartmouth when teaching about the region,” Achilov said.

“The government of Kazakhstan has significantly invested in higher education over the last decade. Impressively, KazNU, and particularly the faculty of the Philosophy and Political Science departments, has emerged as one of the top academic institutions in Central Asia.”

Achilov teaches Comparative PoliticsWriting in Political Science, and Islam and Politics at UMassD this semester, as well as Politics of the Middle East and Research Methods in semesters past.

“My pedagogical style is best described as learner-centric teaching. I try to really engage students to foster collaboration, critical thinking, and critical analysis in all of my classes,” said Achilov. “I love getting students to think outside the box, and I always try to inspire critical, creative, and nuanced thinking about world politics and international affairs.”

Achilov will return to teaching at UMass Dartmouth in the fall of 2022.

“The thing I love most, and will miss most about UMass Dartmouth is it’s people,” said Achilov. “Our students, faculty and staff are what makes this campus special. I love working with my colleagues. I’m very happy and honored to be a member of the political science department here.”

The Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program and is designed to build lasting connections between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The Fulbright Program is funded through an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations, and foundations around the world also provide direct and indirect support to the Program, which operates in over 160 countries worldwide.

Fulbrighters address critical global challenges in all disciplines, while building relationships, knowledge, and leadership in support of the long-term interests of the United States. Fulbright alumni have achieved distinction in many fields, including 59 who have been awarded the Nobel Prize, 84 who have received Pulitzer Prizes, and 37 who have served as a head of state or government.

For further information about the Fulbright Program or the U.S. Department of State, please visit eca.state.gov/fulbright or contact the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Press Office by phone 202-632-6452 or e-mail ECA-Press@state.gov.