Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Lecture, Oslo, December 10, 2006  
“Poverty is a Threat to Peace”
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September 23, 2015: Bangladesh’s poverty rate drops to 24.8 percent
Based on Bangladesh’s latest MDG Progress Report 2015 (posted online by UNDP on
September 23, 2015), the estimated poverty rate for 2015 dropped to 24.8 percent, compared
to 31.5 percent in 2010 and 48.9 percent in 2000.
LEARN MORE ---> (link to UNDP website)
LEARN MORE ---> (link to PDF of report)
September 4, 2015: New BDRC Working Paper Explores Water, Sanitation and Health
This study by Tawhidul Islam, Ohidul Alam, and Khaled Misbahuzzaman is based on a survey of
72 rural families that were selected randomly in two unions of Lohagara Upazila to explore the
current status and adopted measures in the water, sanitation and health sector (WaSH).
August 5, 2015: United Nations Agrees on Goals for Sustainable Future
As reported by Edith Lederer for the Irish Examiner, the 193 member states of the UN have
reached agreement on a development agenda for the next 15 years that calls for eradicating
poverty and hunger, achieving gender equality, improving living standards, and taking urgent
action to combat climate change.
July 23, 2015: Germany to provide 208 million Euro to Bangladesh
As reported by DhakaTribune, Germany will provide 208 million Euro in assistance to
Bangladesh for combating the adverse impacts of climate change, develop energy efficiency
and strengthen governance. The newly appointed German Ambassador to Bangladesh, Dr.
Thomas Prinz, said this while paying a courtesy call to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, reports
United News of Bangladesh (UNB).
July 5, 2015: OECD upgrades Bangladesh country rating by one notch
As reported by Reuters, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
has upgraded its rating for Bangladesh, in a move that should make it easier for local
entrepreneurs and banks to secure credit, the country's central bank governor said on Sunday.
July 2, 2015: Sir Fazle Hasan Abed wins 2015 World Food Prize
As reported by the Guardian, BRAC's Sir Fazle Hasan Abed wins 2015 World Food Prize for
reducing poverty. The founder of the largest non-governmental organization in the world
receives award for ‘unparalleled’ work in Bangladesh and 10 other countries.
June 6, 2015: India and Bangladesh sign historic territory swap deal
Bangladesh and India have signed a historic agreement to simplify their border by exchanging
more than 150 enclaves of land. More than 50,000 people currently live in tiny enclaves, which
typically are cut off from public services. The people of these enclaves will be able to choose
where they want to live and which nationality they would prefer.
Bangladesh Open University set to launch full online academic programs
On May 24, 2015, DhakaTribune reported that Bangladesh Open University (BOU) is set to
launch very soon its first full online academic programs as part of its plan to turn it into a full-
fledged digital university by 2016, moving one step forward with the government’s vision to
establish Digital Bangladesh.
U.S. Congress Hearing on “Bangladesh’s Fracture: Political and Religious Extremism”
On April 30, 2015, the U.S. Congress Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific held a hearing on
Bangladesh’s Fracture: Political and Religious Extremism. The Subcommittee expressed anxiety
over Bangladesh’s political instability as it would serve as a breeding ground for religious
extremism and militancy.
LEARN MORE ---> (links to video of the hearing)
April 2, 2015: New BDRC Working Paper examines impact of ICT on health services in
This study by Fatema Khatun and Mst. Rokshana Khanam Sima applies the simple random
sampling method to primary data collected from Hobiganj Adhunik Zila Sadar Hospital to
examine the impact of existing Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) on health
services in Bangladesh. The study finds that the existing ICT health services do not meet the
demand of the people. Traditional and insufficient equipment is one of the main problems. The
study also finds some other challenges, including unskilled manpower, inadequacy of ICT
infrastructure, and a lack of financial support from the government. Despite these deficits, the
study finds that the use of ICT has a positive impact on the provision of health services in
March 25, 2015: UC Berkeley first US university to house a center for Bangladesh
Improving garment-industry safety, designing apps to solve social problems and gathering data
on antibiotic-resistant bacteria found on fruits and vegetables: These are among the innovative
research projects made possible by UC Berkeley’s new Subir & Malini Chowdhury Center for
Bangladesh Studies. Monday, March 30, marks the official opening of the center.
February 23, 2015: Bangladesh Burning
An Opinion by K. Anis Ahmed, published by The Wall Street Journal, provides an update on
Bangladesh’s current political crisis. More than 100 Bangladeshis have been killed in political
violence since last month, mostly through petrol-bombing of commuter buses and three-wheeler
motorized rickshaws.
Next BDI conference from November 6-8, 2015 at UC at Berkeley
Bangladesh Development Initiative (BDI) is organizing a two-day international conference to
generate new ideas and strategies for transforming Bangladesh into a prosperous nation in the
early decades of the 21st century. Call for Papers.
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