Simeen Mahmud

Researcher Profile

My name is Simeen Mahmud. I live and work in Bangladesh. I am a demographer by training and consider myself an empirical social scientist. My research interests have been varied, from population dynamics in particular fertility change, women’s work and empowerment, citizenship, social policy particularly health, and most recently development policy and gender. Most of my research has used the scientific approach of hypothesis building and testing using quantitative methods, but I have also increasingly been using qualitative methods. Recently, I have engaged in several studies that attempted to use a cross country/ cross context framework.

For most of my professional life I worked at the Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies, the premier public funded development policy research organization in Bangladesh. Since 2009 I have been Lead Researcher at the BRAC Development Institute, under BRAC University, where we have just launched the Centre on Gender and Social Transformation this January. The Centre is engaged in research, training, communications and policy advocacy around three thematic areas (initially): labour markets, livelihoods and social protection; citizenship and political participation; and religion, media and cultural change.

Current and Recent Research Projects

  • Gender and citizenship at the grassroots: Assessing the effect of NGO initiatives in social mobilization and political empowerment in Kenya and Bangladesh
  • Paid work as a pathway of women’s empowerment
  • Diverging patterns of sex ratios in Bangladesh and India
  • The social impact of micro credit on gender norms and behaviour
  • Gendered politics of securing inclusive development
  • Gendered analysis of the labour market in Bangladesh

Collaborative Research Networks

  • RPC on Effective states and inclusive development coordinated by Umiversity of Manchester, UK
  • Research MoU with Population Council, NY and Institute of Microfinance, Dhaka
  • RPC on Pathways of women’s empowerment coordinated by IDS, Sussex University, UK
  • Fertility and Empowerment Research Network at ICRW, Washington DC
  • Joint research project with Eonomics Department at Dhaka University and the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics, Dhaka

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