BRAC Development Institute

BRAC Development Institute (BDI), established in 2008, is a resource center that promotes research and develops knowledge on practical solutions to issues of poverty, inequity and social injustice. BDI provides a space for academics and practitioners to come together to raise critical questions on development; develop, examine and test new initiatives in the South; provide lessons on good practices; and advocate for pro-poor policies. It takes an inclusive, multidisciplinary approach to challenge conventional knowledge and advance a southern voice in the global development discourse.

At the core of BDI’s work are several academic courses, which include both classroom teaching and fieldwork experience:

  • Masters in Development Studies (MDS)
  • Masters in Development Management and Practice (MDMP)
  • Postgraduate Certificate Course on Management of Land Acquisition, Resettlement and Rehabilitation (MLARR)
  • Microfinance: An Introductory Course
  • Applied Social and Marketing Communication: A Short Course


University of Ottawa and BRAC University

The School of International Development and Global Studies (SIDGS) at the University of Ottawa and BDI established an undergraduate and graduate student exchange program in 2010.


BDI hosts a number of national and international projects which are often multi-partner and multidisciplinary. They are organized into five themes:

I. Economic Transformation and the Lives of the Poor: focuses on the vulnerabilities in the lives of those living in poverty, strategies for food security and social protection, and interventions to improve their economic conditions and build sustainable livelihoods.
II. Women’s Empowerment: investigates the factors that affect women’s everyday lives and pathways to transform power relations and structures for greater gender equity.
III. Democracy and Governance: explores how government reforms and citizen participation can lead to pro-poor development and social justice.  
IV. Environment and Climate Change: analyses the socio-economic impact of natural disasters and climate change on vulnerable communities and their coping strategies based on indigenous knowledge.    
V. History, Politics and Development: furthers the understanding of who we are and how we fit into the globalized world through an investigation into the roots of our secular culture and our history of struggles for freedom and economic emancipation.