14 March 2018

Student stories: boosting grass-roots participation in development projects

Abdullah All Shakil (MA Anthropology and Sociology) from Bangladesh is co-founder of a social enterprise which aims to promote grass-roots development initiatives.

“Working with people and the environment has always been my passion. During my anthropology studies at Jahangirnagar University I got involved with the Bangladesh Youth Environmental Initiative, working to raise environmental awareness, build youth capacity and promote socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable development. It’s the first project of its kind in Bangladesh and I’ve personally trained 700 high-school students in the last seven years.”

“During this time I saw that grass-roots populations were not participating in developmental decision-making, so with friends from different countries we set up a Hong-Kong based social enterprise, Development Innovation Insider. The core goal is to include grass-roots communities in development initiatives, building their capacity through providing technical support and funds (impact investing), in order to scale up impact.”

Shakil is the 2017/18 recipient of the Graduate Institute alumni scholarship. You can watch a short video with him below.