Dr Hossain Zillur Rahman
Economist and social thinker Dr Hossain Zillur Rahman is a leading policy voice of Bangladesh with over three decades of experience within and outside government. Holding a masters in economics from Dhaka University, and PhD in political sociology from the University of Manchester, UK, Dr Rahman was a leading researcher at the Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies between 1977 and 2000, and led the internationally renowned Analysis of Poverty Trends project (1989-98). In 1996, he founded the think tank Power and Participation Research Centre (PPRC) and has been its executive chairman since 2000. He was the lead consultant for the preparation of the first poverty reduction strategy paper, Unlocking the Potential, 2005, of the Government of Bangladesh and was a member of the SAARC Poverty Commission. Dr Rahman has also sat on the board of the central bank.
He authored and edited many influential publications on poverty, social protection, governance, urbanisation, inclusive growth, social development and sustainable healthcare. Some of his noted works include Rethinking Rural Poverty (SAGE, 1995); Local Governance and Community Capacities (UPL, 2002); Unbundling Governance (PPRC, 2007); Researching Poverty from the Bottom up (PPRC/Grameen Trust, 2007); Bangladesh 2030: Strategy for Accelerating Inclusive Growth (DCCI/PPRC, 2010); Bangladesh Urban Dynamics (PPRC/World Bank, 2012); Bangladesh: Primary Education Stipends (PPRC/UNICEF, 2013); Social Protection in Bangladesh (UPL, 2014); Road Safety in Bangladesh (PPRC/BRAC, 2014); Realizing UHC Goals: Challenges & Opportunities for Bangladesh (PPRC, 2016); The Urban Spectrum: Metropolitan to Mofussil (PPRC/BBS, 2016); Exploring a more effective pro-poor targeting approach (PPRC/USAID, 2018).
He has been a consultant to international organisations such as The World Bank, ADB, DFID, JICA, JBIC, UNDP, UNICEF, SIDA, SDC, WFP and UNFPA. As a regular resource person at the National Defense College, Dhaka, Dr Rahman lectures on nation-state system, world economic scene, national security and sustainable development. He is also the convener of civic platforms such as Health Bangladesh, and Safe Roads and Transport for All (SROTA).
On 9 January 2008, Dr Rahman was appointed as an advisor to the former caretaker government of Bangladesh and put in charge of the ministries of commerce and education. He served till the end of the tenure of this government on 6 January 2009, and was credited with a lead role in the successful return of electoral democracy to Bangladesh.
He was awarded Dr John Meyer Global Citizenship Award by the Institute for Global Leadership of Tufts University, USA, in November 2009. He became one of the three awardees of the Gold Medal Award 2013 of Rotary International Bangladesh for his services to humanity.
Advocate Syeda Rizwana Hasan
Adv Syeda Rizwana Hasan is an enrolled lawyer with the Supreme Court of Bangladesh. She works on environmental issues as the chief executive of the Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers’ Association (BELA), a reputed national NGO. Her main focus is on promoting the notion of environmental justice in Bangladesh.
Ms Hasan did her master’s and graduation in law from the University of Dhaka with distinction. She started her career with BELA in 1993 and is still with the organisation today.
As the chief executive of BELA, Ms Hasan is responsible for the overall coordination of Bela’s activities, which include research, awareness raising, public interest litigation (PIL) and advocacy. Ms Hasan has filed PILs on various environmental issues, most of which have received favourable orders/ judgments. She has fought against vehicular pollution, river pollution, industrial pollution, shipbreaking, grabbing of wetlands, cutting of hills, unregulated mining, unplanned urbanisation, commercial shrimp cultivation, deforestation and loss of biodiversity. Her cases are redefining the current notion of development without regard for the environment. As an anthropocentric environmentalist, her efforts are adding value to the conventional human rights movement by bringing in the elements of environmental justice. She places people’s legitimate rights at the centre of her activism.
Ms Hasan is a recipient of the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize. She has been named as one of the 40 Environmental Heroes of the World by TIME magazine, recognising her impassioned leadership, hard-driving skill, and uncompromising courage in the campaign for judicial activism which has demonstrated that the right to environment is nothing less than a people’s right to dignity and life, Ms Hasan was awarded the Ramon Magsaysay Award in 2012.
Adeeb H Khan
Adeeb H Khan is a chartered accountant and the senior partner of Rahman Rahman Huq (member firm of KPMG International).
He is a council member (elected position) of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Bangladesh and currently its vice president. He is also a committee member (elected position) of the Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce & Industry (MCCI), the oldest and one of the most prestigious trade chambers of Bangladesh.
Adeeb’s past directorships include Biman Bangladesh Airlines, the national flag carrier of Bangladesh.
Irene Zubaida Khan
Irene Zubaida Khan is director-general of the International Development Law Organization (IDLO). She was secretary general of Amnesty International and worked for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees for 21 years. Ms Khan is a member of the World Bank Advisory Council on Gender and Development. She sits on the boards of several international human rights and development organisations. She received the Sydney Peace Prize in 2006 for her work to end violence against women and girls. Her book, The Unheard Truth: Poverty and Human Rights, has been translated into seven languages.
Shafiq ul Hassan
Shafiq ul Hassan is the managing director of Echo Sourcing Limited UK and Echotex Limited Bangladesh. Echotex has received Bangladesh’s National Environmental Award, Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Dhaka’s Environmental Award and J Sainsbury plc’s Corporate Social Responsibility Award in 2010. Echotex was also awarded Best Clothing Supplier in 2011 as well as Best Clothing Supplier and Supplier of the Year in 2012 by J Sainsbury plc. He is the co-founder of Children’s Hope, an NGO that works to educate slum children in Dhaka. He obtained his undergraduate degree from City University, London and his postgraduate degrees from Aston University, Birmingham, UK.
Dr Fawzia Rasheed
Dr Fawzia Rasheed started out as a medical research scientist before moving into programme and policy development.
She has advised 16 ministries of health, several national and international NGOs; and served as senior policy advisor to UNAIDS, WHO, The Global Fund, and the Africa Progress Panel / Kofi Annan Foundation. Dr Rasheed has developed national plans, projects and programmes, as well as models for governance. She routinely raises funds and reviews grants for funding. In recent years, Dr Rasheed has engaged with broader development themes, from election reform and natural resource management to transparency initiatives. She works extensively in Africa and Asia.
Adv. Syeda Rizwana Hasan
Adeeb H. Khan
Dr Fawzia Rasheed