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BRAC University, anchored in the basic ethos of BRAC Development Institute (BDI), develops solutions to the challenges of poverty, inequity and social injustice. The following are its core functions:

  • Creating knowledge: ensuring visibility of the innovative development experiences in the South and upholding the southern voice in the global development discourse;
  • Convening experts: providing a convening platform for practitioners, academics and policy makers to come together to focus on specific problems of the poor and develop new strategies and pathways to alleviate these conditions;
  • Incubating ideas: field testing fresh, new ideas through rigorous qualitative and quantitative studies and pilot projects to understand process and impacts and thus, distilling best practice lessons for adaptation and scaling up;
  • Advocating policy: working with policy makers to promote pro-poor development strategies.

Member Projects

  1. Strengthening Social Protection of Informal Workers: Supporting Poverty Reduction and Social Inclusion Across Stable and Fragile Contexts : This project aims to inform and strengthen social protection policy to reduce poverty and increase social inclusion among marginalized workers and the vulnerable in the informal sector by investigating the nature, extent and drivers of social exclusion and vulnerability of informal sector workers and groups living in the Chittagong Hill Tracts and on char land in Bangladesh.
  2. Women’s Empowerment and Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) in Bangladesh: BDI in collaboration with FHI 360, a US- based international organization, is implementing this project in Bangladesh to clarify individual and community-level mechanisms by which women’s empowerment is associated with the risk of experiencing IPV in rural Bangladesh.
  3. Community and Institutional Responses to the Challenges Facing Poor Urban People in the Era of Global Warming in Bangladesh: This study of six low-income settlements in three cities – Dhaka, Chittagong and Khulna – examines poor people’s adaption practices to understand their agency, cultural resources and economic strategies in the face of climate change, and the structural factors that both support and constrain poor people’s agency.
  4. Pathway of Women’s Empowerment Research Program: This international research program consortium is made up of activists and academics who explore and seek to bring about positive change in women’s everyday lives.
  5. Pro-Poor Slum Integration Project: This joint venture project aims to improve the quality of life of the poor community living in slums by improving the standard of housing and enhancing the community’s self-assurance, livelihood sustainability and resilience.

Areas of Expertise