Sajida Awan

PhD Candidate


After my MBA I became involved with a grass roots level development organization called; SUNGI Development Foundation” which works in some of the most deprived parts of Pakistan, including the earthquake-affected areas. Having gained experience of working in development, I later joined UNICEF where I spent over two and a half years in the Water and Sanitation section, assisting to provide improved facilities throughout the earthquake affected zones as well as promoting better hygiene understanding and practices, focusing primarily on the health and welfare of children and women. Then I joined United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), where in my role as Program Associate I was independently as well as in support to other team members worked on Rule of Law, Strengthening democracy through Parliament, Legal Empowerment of the Poor and Election and other governance related projects.

While working with UNDP, in pre-disaster phase in the governance unit, I could see the bad governance challenges in the government sector but working during disaster phase (2010-2012) I could see the governance issues even in the donor as well as non-governmental organization (NGO) sector. This implies that the sustainable development itself has challenges from within. An analysis of this situation has led me to focus my future career goals to further my understanding of economic development and environmental sustainability, an increasingly important area of study and policy making which seeks to create links between environmental and social sustainability, while also ensuring that all development and social planning and interventions contain an aspect or awareness of gender issues.