Alumni profile - Shahida Pervin
At the CPD, I got involved in studies crucial for the Bangladesh economy, including estimating women’s unpaid contribution to the economy, Bangladesh’s graduation from LDC, reviewing macroeconomic and social indicators of the country, etc.
(Economics MSc, 2018)
Could you tell me about your work at the Centre for Policy Dialogue and National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies? What drew you to this work?
I was working at the Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD), a leading think tank in South Asia, as a senior research associate before studying at Queen Mary University of London for my MSc in Economics. I like academic and research work, so just after finishing my study in Bangladesh, I joined a research organization, and later I switched to the CPD. At the CPD, I got involved in studies crucial for the Bangladesh economy, including estimating women’s unpaid contribution to the economy, Bangladesh’s graduation from LDC, reviewing macroeconomic and social indicators of the country, etc. I performed best in my university back in Bangladesh; therefore, it was not difficult for me to get into a research organization to train myself as a research professional. I am currently studying policy analysis, specializing in labour market, at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS) in Tokyo, Japan. I think my motivation for research, academic performance, and available opportunities drew me to the work I have been engaged in.
Studying and working in several countries are thrilling. It gives a feeling at home anywhere, broadens the understanding and knowledge, brings people of divergence close.
Why did you choose to study Economics? Why at Queen Mary?
I studied economics and worked in economic research organizations back in Bangladesh, so economics is kind of my field. I chose Economics at the Queen Mary for a couple of reasons, let me mention a few.
- I had friends and colleagues who studied at Queen Mary, which marked an impression in my mind about the university.
- The Chevening scholarship had an earlier Economics scholar at Queen Mary, that drove me to choose Queen Mary for Chevening university choice.
- I wanted to live in London, for that Queen Mary was the right place for me.
You have studied and worked in several different countries – what has that experience been like? Were there any surprises?
Studying and working in several countries are thrilling. It gives a feeling at home anywhere, broadens the understanding and knowledge, brings people of divergence close. I also worked part-time at the Queen Mary and the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) in London for a short time when I was studying at Queen Mary. Being at Queen Mary was exciting at that time because I was abroad to study for the first time.
What motivates you in life?
I think I am not motivated by some single or specific thing; everything in life inspires me. Every good or bad thing around has something to teach us to apply for the betterment of humankind. So I would say being able to do or make something better and worthy is a motivation in life.
What are your plans or hopes for the future?
After finishing my Ph.D., going back to research work is a plan right now. My hope for the future is to contribute to making people’s life better by applying my knowledge and experience.
What were the highlights of your time at Queen Mary?
I cherish my every memory of Queen Mary – the school, classroom, seminar, café, canal side, library, snowy day, discussion with friends, festivals, and so many. One memory I can mention here that I am still carrying in my life. During my Queen Mary days, I used to spend a long time in the library. One day, when I was going downstairs for coffee or lunch, there were some books displayed on the library's ground floor. One book drew my attention when I was passing by, which was on something like food habit or veganism or vegetarianism. I just had a glimpse of the preface, which was when I decided my mind to go vegetarian. I do not remember the book or the author, but I have never eaten meat since then. There are other things I can highlight at that time – getting selected for Ph.D., traveling around, and many more.