Pulte and Eck Institutes Welcome Visiting Scholar, Mushtaque R. Chowdhury

Author: Kara Kelly

Mushtaque R. Chowdhury, a Bangladeshi development worker, researcher, academic, and micro-philanthropist, has joined the Pulte Institute for Global Development and the Eck Institute for Global Health as a visiting scholar for six months. Chowdhury will contribute to the Institutes’ collective work to help all people access quality health services, safeguard from public health risks, and protect all people from impoverishment due to illness or environmental factors.

Chowdhury will connect with various campus initiatives to contribute to ending extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity in low- and middle-income countries, where most of the world’s poor reside.

“Mushtaque’s stay at Notre Dame continues our emphasis on engaging leading voices from around the world in understanding poverty’s many facets,” William J. Pulte Director Tracy Kijewski-Correa said. “It’s a critical moment for this kind of dialogue. Unmet social needs, environmental factors, and barriers to accessing care contribute to negative health outcomes for those living in poverty, and the situation is growing more dire each day.”

Chowdhury spent four decades with BRAC, the world’s largest non-governmental organization. He served as BRAC’s Vice Chair, Executive Director, founding director of the Research and Evaluation Division, and the founding dean of the BRAC James P. Grant School of Public Health.

Chowdhury is also a professor of Population and Family Health at Columbia University. He also worked as the senior adviser and acting managing director at the Rockefeller Foundation and as a fellow at Harvard University.

He received several awards and accolades, including the prestigious “Medical Award of Excellence” by the Chicago-based Ronald McDonald House Charities in 2017, and was honored by The Lancet for his contribution to global health in 2013.

Chowdhury is a founder of the Bangladesh Education Watch and Bangladesh Health Watch, two civil society watch-dogs, and has published nearly 200 peer-reviewed scientific articles in national and international journals.

He holds a Ph. D. from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, a Master of Science from the London School of Economics, and a bachelor’s in Statistics from Dhaka University.

"I am extremely delighted to be here at the historic University of Notre Dame," Chowdhury said. "Apart from working with colleagues, and of course cheering on the football team, I hope to take forward our common agenda of improving the lives of the poor and other disadvantaged communities across the world."