Development Experience and Emerging Challenges Bangladesh
  About the book

There was widespread pessimism about the development prospects of Bangladesh during the period following independence. Contrary to the prevailing concerns, however, Bangladesh has achieved considerable success and performed well in several areas of development. Improvements in human development have been particularly remarkable. The economy has also moved to a higher growth path over the last two decades. Not only economic growth has picked up, but it has been less volatile and more stable, compared to most South and East Asian countries. Perhaps this has led many to believe that Bangladesh can realize its growth potential so as to join the ranks of middle-income countries within a decade or so. The transition to the high growth regime, however, has been accompanied by worsening income distribution over time. This obviously raises serious concern about the quality of growth in terms of rate of poverty reduction, degree of income inequality and generation of productive employment. What kind of economic growth is Bangladesh attaining? Has the growth process been sufficiently broad-based and inclusive? How to accelerate the rate of economic growth and achieve further improvement in human development? An international conference was organized by BIDS in December 2007 on the occasion of its Golden Jubilee Celebration. The broad theme of the conference was ‘Development prospects of Bangladesh: Emerging challenges’, in which some of the questions raised above were addressed. A number of renowned national and international experts, who were closely associated with BIDS in the past, participated in the conference. A selection of papers presented in the conference and the proceedings of the panel discussion have been published in this volume. It is expected that the ideas presented in the papers and the engaging intellectual debate on development experience, emerging challenges and policy options for development of Bangladesh will be useful to the wide audience, both academicians and development practitioners alike.

Rushidan Islam Rahman is Research Director, Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies.

Quazi Shahabuddin is former Director General, Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies.