UIU conference 2017 on Sustainable Development
ESS faculty, Adnan M. S. Fakir presented the study on “The Endogeneity of Domestic Violence with Women’s Autonomy: Understanding women empowerment through autonomy,” at the UIU conference 2017 on Sustainable Development. The paper explores the empirical difficulties when estimating empowerment effects on domestic violence. The paper was co-authored was with Anika Anjum, Fabiha Bushra & Nabilah Nawar.
SANEM conference 2017
Azraf Ahmed, recent graduate of ESS, presented the study “The Comparative Effect of Corruption and Piketty’s Second Fundamental Law of Capitalism on Inequality,” at the SANEM conference 2017 under the “Budding Economists” segment. The study asks the question whether the structure of capitalism or institutional corruption contributes more to a country’s inequality. The study was co-authored with Adnan M. S. Fakir, lecturer of ESS, Masnun Sajid, Ridhim Gani & Mostafa Hossain.
ESS faculty, Rehnuma Jahan Islam makes it on the headlines again. This time she shares her ideas on start-ups and their possibilities to expand globally. For the full article please refer to the links below:
The James P Grant School of Public Health conducted a flagship course on “Transforming SRHR: Transgender Diversities in Bangladesh”. Held from 12-14 February, the course explored the marginalised gender identities in relation transgender and sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR). Diving deeper, the participants were oriented on the larger histories of transgender and shifting meanings of the term. Furthermore, this course was the start of critical dialogues around hijra, transgender identity, body, gender and SRHR, and mobilise advocacy to address policy issues.
The course was facilitated by noted academics, lawyers, journalists and activists, including Adnan Hossain (University of Amsterdam, Netherlands), Anindya Hajra (Pratyay Gender Trust, Calcutta, India), and Charu Gupta (South Asian Studies Council, MacMillan Center, Yale University), Sara Hossain (Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust), Ananta Yusuf (The Daily Star), Shahnaz Munni (…), Ivan Ahmed Katha (icddr,b), and Joya Sikder (icddr,b).
Japan East Asia Network of Exchange for Students and Youths (JENESYS) is a project sponsored by the Japanese government since 2007. This exchange program is to invite youths from overseas to Japan for promoting mutual understanding and friendship with Japanese youths and citizens. This year, since January 2017, students, young citizens of SAARC nations were invited in different groups under this program to visit this beautiful island nation in the Pacific, which is also known as “Land of the Rising Sun”. Eleven students from Bangladesh, which includes three university and eight high school students, participated in this program from 05th to 14th February 2017. Ramisa Rahman from EEE department, BRAC University was participated in JENESYS program. “We departed Dhaka on 5th February and reached Narita, Japan on 6thevening. As we stepped out of the Airport, we started feeling the taste of chill weather. Luckily we were briefed by Japan Embassy officials about the dresses required to protect ourselves from the chill and cold waves. In Narita View Hotel, we met delegates from other SAARC Nations. Participants were distributed in different groups. We, three university students from Bangladesh, were placed in one group, while rest eight high school students were placed in another group. In my group, there were three Bangladeshi and four participants from each country (Afghanistan, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka).
This visit enhanced our knowledge on Japan’s population, ethnicity, language, religion, history and many other aspects. It is interesting to note that Japan has 127 million population but with single ethnicity which is similar to Bangladesh. While most of member countries of SAARC are represented by multiple ethnic people. So is the case of language. A large number languages are used in SAARC member countries, while Japanese and Bangladeshis are using single language. But, one thing is different in case of Japan; that is the population growth. They are expecting a decline population less than 100 million by 2044. I was impressed knowing their economic progress. This country was devastate in world war II and she did not have any natural resources but she is now one of the largest producers of steel and their industries have grown fast making the country very rich.
Our first visit was at Narita Izumi Incineration plant. This is a very interesting place to see, because it recycles the waste products and produces construction material. They also ensure overall environmental impact by using advanced technology to minimize dioxin and other harmful emissions. There is distinct difference in the concept of industrialization process in Japan. They are more concerned on the effect on human and the environment. We also visited Tokyo Rinkai Disaster Prevention Park, which acts as a central base of operations for disaster prevention in the Tokyo metropolitan area. Ithouses emergency response facilities including local disaster management headquarters; as well as serves as an Institution that compiles disaster related information and co-ordinates emergency disaster measures. It is because this country is frequently hit by earthquake. So, like us they have no other alternatives than to remain prepared against such natural challenges.
For the first time, I have experienced riding of Shinkansen (Japan fast bullet train). The view from the window changes with speed from a city high raised building to a snow covered countryside. Before I could enjoy diversescenic beauties en-route Tokyo to Iwate,we reached our destination very fast. Most of my group members experienced snowfalls for the first time, hence they were highly excited. There are many mountains in Iwate. It is located northeast of Japan along the Pacific Oceans. We called on Kuji city mayor and visited Kuji wave power station. This place was hit and greatly damaged by the great east Japan Earthquake and the Tsunami. The power station is a latest industry built in Japan (October 2016). People from all walks of life worked together to develop this plant. It uses tidal power to generate electricity. It’s really worth to visit there. It was also a great honor for me and my other group members to be appointed as Honorary Ambassador of Tourism of Kuji City.
The most interesting part of JENESYS program was staying with a host family. We, two Bangladeshi (me and Rupkotha)and one Afghan (Mursan Kamal),were hosted by a single family for two nights. We had wonderful time with them. They taught us how to greet, how to dress, how to eat in Japanese style. Although the Japanese eat raw foods, like shushi, salads etc; but for us they prepared well cooked foods. It appeared to me that Japanese are very hospitable nation and possesses similar to our custom and traditions. This visit also enabled us to learn about the cultures and traditions of other participating nations and make new friends.
Nine days visit in the land of sunrise was full of new experiences and sweet memories. It opened my eyes and enabled me to see lots of interesting aspects of life. I learned about a country which developed very fast from the scratches and presently dominates the world in economy. The scenic beauty of the country; discipline, patriotism and simplicity of the Japanese people amazed me a lot. It also helped me to learn about other SAARC nations. I sincerely thank Japanese government for making such endeavor for enriching the youths with diverse knowledge and experiences".
In February 2017, the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) continued with it’s the tutorial program for all BRACU students, especially the freshmen, at-risk students and students on academic probation. OSA offered tutorials in selected 100-level courses where student failing rate is very high and students are facing difficulty. Along with the faculty members from OSA, student tutors, who are senior students of BRACU, conducted these tutorial sessions. During the tutorial sessions faculty members and tutors give individual attention to students’ specific needs and students have the opportunity to engage with the course materials more directly.
Tutorials offered by OSA are for MAT110, PHY111, MAT120, CSE110, BUS101 and ECO101 courses. Total 730 students (one student came multiple times) attended in 102 tutorial sessions in the above mentioned courses in February, 2017.
In the month of February 2017, individual and group advising sessions with probation students before midterm exam was taking place. Students with probation status, both first time probation students and last chance probation students, were coming to the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) for individual and/or group probation advising with their advisers. Solaiman Jony, Tanjia Afrin Turin and Fatema Israt Jahan, probation advisers from the OSA conducted the advising sessions. Students were advised on different academic issues and suggested to take preparation ahead of their midterm exam in order to perform better in the exam.
Total 98 probation students (one student came multiple times) both attended the probation advising sessions.
Apart from the advising, FYAT team had arranged meetings with FYAT mentors (Fall 2016) where they were asked to refer the probation students to the tutorial sessions and monitor them. During these meetings the FYAT team responded to the queries of mentors and guided them how to interact with students and FYAT advisers.
Khonder Jeaul Karim, a student of Applied Physics and Electronics program in the Mathematics and Natural Sciences Department presented his thesis work (APE 400) and Internship Report (APE 450) on February 13, 2017. The thesis work was supervised jointly by Dr. Firoze H. Haque and Mr. Muhammad Lutfor Rahman. The internship work was supervised jointly by Mr. Muhammad Lutfor Rahman and Mr. Mahabubul Haq. Mr. Mahbubul Haq, Director General of Atomic Energy Research Establishment (AERE), Savar, Dhaka and former Director of Institute of Electronics and Energy Institute. The Viva Board was chaired by Professor A. A. Z. Ahmad. Dr. Taffazal Hossain, Dr. Firoze H. Haque, Mr. Mahabobe Shobahani and Mr. Muhammad Lutfor Rahman were also present in the Viva-Board as members of the Examination Committee.
The office of Career services And Alumni Relations (OCSAR) in association with Banglalink launched “Strategic Assistant Program” for the Last year students of BRAC University on 13th February 2017 in BRACU Indoor Games Room UB03 (9th Floor).
This program basically gives the opportunity to fresh graduates to kick start their career and to develop themselves into a leader of tomorrow. Mr. Monzula Morshed Chief Human resources and administration officer, Mr. Mustafa Raihanul Alam Head of Talent Acquisition and Development, Mr. Khaled bin Obaid Talent Acquisition Specialist, Ms. Nujhat Jannatun Naeem Digital Brands Manager, Mr. Parvez Ahmed Corporate Group Manager and Mr. Zarif Hassan Strategic Assistant were present in the session and mesmerized the students by pointing out the fact that being a strategic assistant will not only give them an opportunity to work with the world-class team but also empower them with a lot of opportunities which will help Banglalink to be more successful.
Ar. Dr. Sajid Bin DOZA joined the congress based on 'Future of Vernacular Architecture' in the Architects Regional Council of Asia-ARCASIA in Bangkok, Thailand.
Dr. Doza presented an abstract on Ancestor's Wisdom of Deltaic Architecture of Bangladesh. 12 countries from Asia participated in this congregation of ARCHITECTS. To promote sustainable approach through the light of traditional craftsmanship was the main focal point of this congress. Dr. DOZA placed the glorious and splendid examples of cultural heritage of Bangladesh through his presentation.
BRAC University (BRACU) celebrated “Pohela Falgun”, the first day of spring at its campus on 13 February to welcome the most awaited “Season of flowers”.
Students celebrated the day singing songs, reciting poems and dancing. The campus was decorated with festoons and banners representing Bangladeshi culture. Girls wore sarees representing colours of spring while boys colorful panjabis. Dr. Ansar Ahmed, Director, Institutional Effectiveness of BRACU, inaugurated the event while Ivan Shafaat Bari, Director, Office of Co-curricular Activities (OCA), BRACU and other Heads of Departments were also present.
“Pitha Utshob”, a fair showcasing traditional cake, arranged by BRAC University Heritage Forum (BUHF) added new enthusiasm among the students. Every year, BUHF organizes this fair to introduce students with Bangladeshi culture. The venue was an open place in the campus known as “Prangon” where students brought varity of cakes. “Prangon’’ was beautifully decorated and stalls were set up. Popular Bangla songs played in the background added more delight to the enthusiasm of the fair.
At the auditorium and cafeteria areas, OCA organised several programs including magic & comedy shows and indoor games. The event was support by e-commerce site Daraz Bangladesh Ltd.
A seminar titled “Public Health’ was held on February 11, 2017, in BRACU Savar Campus. The purpose of the seminar was to familiarize students with the benefits of health and well-being and also help them gain basic knowledge regarding sexual and reproductive health. Mr. Md. Morshedul Haque, Senior Dorm Supervisor, introduced the guests at the beginning of the seminar.
The seminar was a combined session which was divided into two parts: while the female students took part in the session, the males watched a documentary in different classrooms and while the male students participated in the session, the females watched the documentary.
One of the sessions was facilitated by Mr. Kuhel Faizul Islam, Program Coordinator of James P. Grant School of Public Health (JPGSPH). Few common but vital factors were covered in the session such as basic hygiene, consequences of junk food, smoking, drug abuse and others. The other session was conducted by Ms. Tasfiyah Jalil, Project Coordinator of JPGSPH, which focused on how to live a sound sexual and reproductive life and take decisions independently. After each discussion, students took part in a question/answer session.
Overall, it can be deemed as an effective session in terms of sharing knowledge and being conscious about 'health and well being’.
The James P Grant School of Public Health, along with BRAC, and BRAC Institute of Governance and Development signed Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) with the Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex. The MoUs will consolidate partnerships between these institutes and will be the foundation for future joint research ventures while endeavouring to produce mutually beneficial framework for future collaborations, with the over-arching goal of reducing poverty and inequality.
Ahmed Mushtaque Raza Chowdhury (Vice Chair, BRAC; Advisor to JPGSPH); Sabina Faiz Rashid (Dean, James P Grant School of Public Health); Sultan Hafeez Rahman (Executive Director, BRAC Institute of Governance and Development); and Melissa Leach (Director, Institute of Development Studies) officially signed the MoUs.
The MoUs were signed as part of a wider series of events taking place at IDS and in the UK parliament, looking at the rapid progress of development in Bangladesh over the last forty years.
Bangladesh has successfully taken to scale a number of interventions that have brought innovative changes in the social sector. However, there is a lack of documentation on lessons learned from previous experiences of adopting and scaling-up interventions. To address this gap, the James P Grant School of Public Health and UNICEF, under the patronage of Implementation Monitoring and Evaluation Division of the Government of Bangladesh, have partnered to form the Centre of Science of Implementation and Scale-Up.
The new Centre was officially launched on 13 February and will endeavour to document best practices, conduct evidence-based advocacy and institutionalise capacity-building on the science of scaling up interventions, bridging the worlds of academia and policy-making for increased evidence-based decision-making on scaling up proven interventions.
Conference on Asia-Pacific Conference on Education, Society and Psychology (APCESP) 2017 was held in the Seoul, South Korea from February 07-10, 2017. One member from the Counseling Unit, Ms. Anne Anthonia Baroi, Psychosocial Counselor and Lecturer attended the conference where she orally presented her article on “Impact of Psychological Counselling on Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Victims of Rana Plaza Tragedy”. The aim of this study is to investigate the impact of psychological counselling on victims with PTSD from the Rana Plaza tragedy. This piece of research also indicates that psychological counselling can effectively reduce the trauma of the victims of the Rana Plaza Tragedy. Especially to show that if skills training and psychological treatment could be combined, the impact will be strong and positive. The paper was also published in the conference proceedings.
Moreover, Ms. Anne Anthonia Baroi also participated as a Chair of a session in the conference. In this conference, presenter got the opportunity to know about various theories of Psychology and the new advancement in the areas of Psychology. Besides that, this conference brings the chance to exchange knowledge with the other participants of the conference.
Dr. Khan Md Raziuddin Taufique, Asst Professor, BRAC Business School has participated in a five-day research methodology workshop on ‘Impact Evaluation of Climate Change’ from 5 to 10 February 2017. The workshop was organized by Indian Society for Ecological Economics (INSEE) which is affiliated with International Society for Ecological Economics. Dr. Khan Taufique is also a life member of INSEE. The workshop was funded by the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) and hosted by Institute of Economic Growth, University of Delhi, India.
As it was a fully funded conference, the selection process was very competitive where only 19 percent of the applicants were invited to participate in the workshop. The workshop covers a range of research tools for impact evaluation with special focus on basic econometrics, randomized control trials (RCT), Difference-in-Difference (DID), sampling and experiment design, instrumental variables and application of impact evaluation tools in agricultural research. A total of 35 participants from different countries attended the workshop. All participants presented their research proposals at the end of the workshop and certificates were distributed accordingly.
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