Bangladesh gained independence from Pakistan in 1971. To mark 50 years of Bangladesh’s independence, the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute at Harvard University held a virtual conference, “Bangladesh @ 50: Looking Back, Looking Forward” on March 3 and 4, 2021. The conference highlighted the arc of Bangladesh’s history from the Language Movement through the Liberation War to the present – and the future.
Category : Bangladesh
We spoke with one of the experts who participated in the “Economic Development: From ‘Basket Case’ to Emerging Economy” panel, Sajeda Amin, Senior Associate at the Population Council in New York, about her years of work with women’s empowerment in Bangladesh. Sajeda Amin conducts intervention research on empowerment programs for girls and women and writes about the role of education and work opportunities in girls’ and women’s lives. She has designed and implemented interventions to prevent violence and child marriage by empowering adolescent girls and has studied their outcomes in Bangladesh, India, Mali, Malawi, and Niger.
We spoke with one of the speakers who will participate in the “Political Development: Making, Unmaking, and Rebuilding of Founding Principles” panel, Rounaq Jahan, Distinguished Fellow at the Centre for Policy Dialogue in Bangladesh, about the political history of Bangladesh, and what needs to be done to push forward in the future. Previously, she served as a Professor of Political Science at Dhaka University and a Senior Research Scholar and Adjunct Professor at Columbia University.
The profound and inspirational work of our artists has not stopped despite the COVID-19 pandemic. In this magazine, we spoke with each of our fellows to discuss the inspiration behind their career as an artist, what they hope to learn during their time as a Visiting Artist Fellow, and their thoughts on the artwork they have each presented in this magazine. In the magazine’s pages, you will read the artists’ thoughts on these subjects in their own words, and we hope that it will inspire you to enter their world and see their work through their eyes.
View a virtual gallery of the artwork from our 13 2020-2021 Visiting Artist Fellows from India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Nepal.
Video: The Labor of Fashion, the Global COVID-19 Crisis, and the Politics of Resistance in Bangladesh
Through the lens of a contemporary case study, the panelists explore the geopolitics of how vaccines are developed, the funding and distribution methods that are critical to the effort, and the global alliances that facilitate this in the world today, focusing on the South Asia context. They discuss the mechanics and commerce of vaccine development and the critical role that science and business can play in combating pandemics such as COVID-19.
“There is nothing as epochal as the cataclysmic event that was visited upon the people of South Asia when decolonization occurred and the British withdrew during the dismantling of the British empire. That forced event — that trauma — continues to shape the lives of two billion of the world’s seven billion people today,” says Professor Tarun Khanna, Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at the Harvard Business School and Director of the Mittal Institute. Despite the abundant historical and political scholarship on the Partition of British India in 1947, there are still gaps in our understanding of the event — and the Mittal Institute’s research team set out to change that.
Recently, the Mittal Institute held a webinar to delve into entrepreneurship in South Asia amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. We spoke with webinar panelist Rajeeb Samdani — Managing Director of Golden Harvest Group, Co-Founder and Trustee of the Samdani Art Foundation, and a member of the Mittal Institute’s Arts Advisory Council — to learn more about how the pandemic has impacted business in Bangladesh, as well as the nation’s many unique qualities that have quickly made it an economic powerhouse in the region.
Recently, Dr. Tarun Khanna, Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at the Harvard Business School and the Director of the Mittal Institute, addressed an online audience of more than 15,000 youth at the South Asia Youth Resilience Summit organized by Bangladesh Youth Leadership Center (BYLC).
Last week, Muhammad Musa, Executive Director of BRAC International, visited the Mittal Institute to speak with Tarun Khanna, Director of the Mittal Institute and Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at Harvard Business School. Together, they uncovered the effort it takes for BRAC to continue expanding on its role as the world’s largest NGO.