Message from the Chairperson
Welcome to the Department of Development Studies!
Development Studies is a fast growing discipline which combines skills and perspectives from the other major branches of social science including Economics, Politics, Policy and Administration with the principal intention of studying and exploring the broader discourses and challenges of development. Development Studies, I feel, provides a platform standing on which the students can learn the core of other disciplines, and develop a broader focus on the contemporary issues and challenges of development both in the country and beyond. The Department was launched in the early 2000s; although of relatively recent origin, we feel that the Department has already succeeded in establishing itself as a reputable institution both at home and abroad.
Ours is one of the most popular subjects in the social sciences faculty in the University in terms of the demand by the graduate and post graduate students for enrollment into our programmes. We receive laudation and appreciation from our diverse alumni and their professional associations. The Department is represented into the relevant national level government committee and panels on a regular basis. We also have functional links to several major corporate organizations in the country. Moreover the Department regularly receives requests from the leading national organisations to provide technical and professional services. Needless to say, this is a particularly relevant time for focusing on, and studying development in Bangladesh – since we as a nation are now striving towards achieving the ‘middle income country’ status, and we are also focusing on maintaining the pace of development that we have achieved over the last two decades. Keeping this focus in mid, Development Studies, as taught in this Department, provides an in-depth and inclusive analysis of the concept of development and in our academic programmes, we make a consicous effort to combine both the theoretical and practical dimensions of the concept.
We are very fortunate in the Department of the Development Studies to be able to welcome and nurture development practitioners representing a diverse background in terms of their professional expertise, academic background, age, ethnicity and demographic characteristics. I think the main attraction of professional courses such as the Master of Development Studies (MDS), Post Graduate Diploma of Development Studies (PGDDS) and the Executive Certificate program is that we always try to bridge theories and practice. Our interaction through these courses with our students provides us with an opportunity to learn from them and share our skills and experiences. This is mutually benefiting for both the students and the teachers.
You will be glad to know that we are planning to expand the number of seats in some of our popular courses. We would like to offer more opportunities for post graduate level professional people. We would like to focus on greater network and liaison with various national and international development organisations. Moreover we are working to get more publications and instead of confining our academic work to the ivory world of academia, we are concentrating on disseminating them in a language and form which will be more accessible to the development practitioners. We would like to make our professional services available to the broader sections of the society. Furthermore we also have a mind to provide greater number of scholarships and opportunities to more disadvantaged sections of the society.
I strongly believe that students graduating from this Department will be well equipped to face the challenges of the demanding world that awaits them. I would like to assure you that, I along with my team have been working hard to transform the Department into a centre of excellence. Hope you will join hands with us towards making this Department stronger in the years ahead.
Department of Development Studies
University of Dhaka