Daulet Zhailybayev talked about three main periods of the history of ethnographic research in Kazakhstan. The first period of ethnographic research on the territory of Kazakhstan lasted from the second half of the 19th century to the beginning of the 20th century. Studies done during this period laid the foundation ethnography in Kazakhstan and left first documented data about nomadic peoples living on this territory. During this period, the city of Orenburg quickly became the main center of Kazakh ethnographic research. The second period began in 1940-50s, when extensive research works were done under the auspices of the Soviet government.
Creation of the Kazakh Academy of Sciences in 1946 has greatly contributed to the development of ethnographic sciences in Kazakhstan. The 1990s marked the beginning of the third stage of the history of ethnographic research in Kazakhstan when free national research works became possible. Ethnographic sciences during this period mainly focused on ethno-genesis of the people of Kazakhstan and ethno-sociology. Daulet Zhailybayev mentioned that nowadays, ethnographic sciences face many challenges. Namely, the funding for ethnographic research in Kazakhstan is scarce and so is the number of experts in this field. The research methodologies, materials and facilities are largely outdated by modern standards, which greatly hinders the development of ethnographic sciences in Kazakhstan.