Completed Projects

Project title: Partnership to ensure the sustainability of a public health palliative care project in Bangladesh through Community Theater: A follow on project

Funding source: AHRC-MRC (GCRF) (Grant Ref: AH/R005923/1)

Lead investigator: Dr. Shahaduz Zaman, Reader, Brighton, and Sussex Medical School, University of Sussex, UK

Co-Investigators: Prof Nezam Uddin Ahmed (BSMMU), Prof Malabika Sarker (BRACU), Prof Din M Sumon Rahman (ULAB), Dr. Janaka Jayawickrama (University of York), Dr. Maya Semrau (University of Sussex)

Project duration: 12 months (February 2019- January 2020)

Description: This is a follow-up project to the previous study titled “Partnership to ensure the sustainability of a public health palliative care project in Bangladesh through Community Theater” This project attempts to support the sustainability of community-based palliative care in a resource-poor setting. Like the previous study, this study is an interdisciplinary collaborative partnership. This partnership is between the University of Sussex (US), Community Empowerment Programme (CEP), Especially Popular Theatre of BRAC, James P. Grant School of Public Health (JPGSPH) of BRAC University, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU), and Center for Critical and Qualitative Studies (CQS) of the University of Liberal Arts Bangladesh (ULAB). Once again, the script was developed from information and data gathered from an ethnographical study. The script was performed along with interactive graffiti in Narayangonj.


Project title: Midline Project Evaluation – Mapped in Bangladesh (MiB)

Funding source: Centre for Entrepreneurship Development (CED), BRAC University, Bangladesh

Lead Investigator: Dr. Kazi Mahmudur Rahman

Project duration: 3 months (September 2019 – January 2020)

Description: This four-year led project on Ready Made Garment (RMG) Industry is in its halfway phase. This project was implemented by the Centre for Entrepreneurship Development (CED), BRAC University (BRACU). A qualitative methodology approach was employed to assess the objective and address the research questions. This midline evaluation gathered information and lesson which led to the betterment and development of constructive recommendations to enhance the compatibility and prospect of this MiB project.


Project title: Understanding patterns of recreation and media-use of RMG workers in Dhaka City: An Exploratory Study

Funding source: WaterAid Bangladesh

Lead Investigator: Prof Din M Sumon Rahman, PhD

Project duration: 06 months (January 2020 – June 2020)

Description: The way individuals select and participate in recreation activities is an essential part of the affirmation of their identities. This study delved into the existing forms, and mediums of entertainment, as well as the recreational and cultural activities of RMG workers in Bangladesh during their leisure times. While it aimed to understand the use of different media among the population in relation to their class, gender, working conditions, migration history, and health.

A mixed-method research design was taken in this study. Data was collected through Case study, focused ethnography, in-depth interviews, and observation. The survey, frequency distribution analysis, correlations, regression, and Chi-square test were also used. The data of this qualitative approach is triangulated and cross-checked from the points of view of both parties: inter-tools and inter-methods. Data gathered from secondary research is triangulated with primary research and vice versa. Quantitative and qualitative data collection tools were employed to gather data through intensive fieldwork. Snowball sampling technique was used for this study.

Based on the findings, this study proposed a strategic SWOT analysis which explains the comparative strength and weakness of different mediums, platforms, and content, to reach this population with important development interventions. It thus proposed three-tier policy recommendations (individual/community level, organization level, and national level) for development practitioners and policymakers. It is expected that these recommendations would provide several policy impetuses for the policymakers and development practitioners while formulating an effective communication strategy for reaching out to this important segment of the population of Bangladesh.


Project title: Audio-visual storytelling on the marginalized lives in the Bay of Bengal

Funding source: Earth Journalism Network

Lead Investigator: Prof Din M Sumon Rahman, PhD

Project duration: 09 months (January 2020 – September 2020)

Description: The project “Audio-Visual Storytelling on The Marginalized Lives in The Bay of Bengal” aimed to build the capacity of coastal local journalists and journalism students of ULAB on climate-vulnerable marine and island fishing communities. This 9-month project was funded by Earth Journalism Network adopted four participatory workshops on audio-visual storytelling to create compelling human stories. The project hoped to increase access among the public and local policymakers to audio-visual contents containing new and reliable information about vulnerabilities and resilience of marine artisanal fishing and other subsistence-based livelihoods of near-shore areas in the east and central coast of Bangladesh.

There were four participatory learning workshops. These workshops were on audio-visual storytelling using readily available Smartphones, basic digital cameras, audio-capturing devices, and basic editing platforms. There were also three field training trips facilitated for all trainees in off-shore areas and fishery communities for in-depth learning about the unique climate challenges faced by artisanal fishers. There were twenty (20) audio-visual stories [each 3 to 4 minutes long] produce on the challenges in dwindling marine fisheries, disasters, survival narratives, and work safety based on self-reporting in the Bay of Bengal by artisanal fishers.


Project title: Encountering “info-demic” during a pandemic: exploring issues of communication crisis during COVID-19 in Bangladesh (Rapid Research)

Funding source: BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD)

Lead Investigator: Dr. Shahaduz Zaman and Prof Din M Sumon Rahman, PhD

Project duration: March 2020 – May 2020

Description: COVID-19 has affected the world, and each country has experienced it differently. In times of crisis like the one at present, information is needed to lessen fear, anxiety, and uncertainty. The information needs to be accurate and communicated effectively. This project aimed to understand how the Coronavirus crisis has been understood and the communication messages have been received and practiced by the diverse population. This project employed a qualitative study design. Netnography, content analysis, telephone interviews, and shadow observation were used in this study. All data collected were triangulated.


Project title: Fear and Stigma in the Context of Corona Epidemic in Bangladesh: A Rapid Research

Funding source: Bangladesh Health Watch

Lead Investigator: Dr. Shahaduz Zaman and Prof Din M Sumon Rahman, PhD

Project duration: March 2020 – May 2020

Description: Fear, stigma, and discrimination come along with the arrival of an epidemic outbreak. This holds true with the arrival of Coronavirus in Bangladesh. The fear of being socially marginalized and stigmatized may cause people to deny early clinical symptoms and may contribute to their failure to seek timely medical care. Mitigating the fear and stigma directed toward persons infected with, and affected by, Coronavirus is important in controlling its transmission and minimizing damages. With this in mind, a rapid explorative study was done. It was to understand the localized nature and source of COVID -19 related fear and stigma in Bangladesh using various anthropological tools. It also investigated the source of fear, stigma, rumor. The study used a qualitative approach. Netnography, content analysis, shadow observation, and telephone interviews were employed in this study. Due to the situation created by COVID-19, a classic ethnography and participant observation could not be conducted since it would pose a risk to the health and wellbeing of the researchers and the respondents.

The Universityof Liberal Arts Bangladesh and its curricula are accredited by the University Grants Commission (UGC) of Bangladesh, and approved by the Ministry of Education, Government of People's Republic of Bangladesh.