With the aim of building a resilient health system, ARK Foundation has launched the Health Economics Research Network (HERN) in Bangladesh.
The launching event of the network, which is being supported by the Centre for Health Economics at the UK University of York, was held on 19 April at the Six Seasons Hotel in Dhaka, reads a press release.
The network aims to create a platform which will facilitate high quality research in the field of health economics to inform policy and practice in order to improve population health.
Professor Dr Rumana Huque, Executive Director, ARK Foundation, Professor Dr Zahidul Quayyum, Director of Research, BRAC JPGSPH, Professor Dr Atonu Rabbani, Mushtaque Chowdhury Chair in Health and Poverty, BRAC JPGSPH, and Professor Dr Syed Abdul Hamid, Institute of Health Economics, University of Dhaka launched the HERN by inaugurating the website and logo of the organisation.
Professor Rumana Huque said that a number of students are completing undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in economics and health economics each year from different public and private universities of Bangladesh. However, they still require the practical experience of applying the theory into practice.
She also said that the network would work to bridge the knowledge gap and create a platform for local researchers to carry out context-specific research in the field of health economics.
According to Professor Zahidul Quayyum, limited networking opportunities with national and international experts create major obstacles for building competent leaders for research in the field of health economics.
He hoped that the network would be successful in bringing together academics and experts from across Bangladesh to build health economics research capacity in the country, and facilitate related research in the future.
SM Abdullah, Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Dhaka and a Researcher of ARK Foundation gave a brief overview about the network and said that the capacity building efforts would remain a priority objective of the network.
He shared future activities of the network including organising workshops, seminars and training sessions.
Md Nazmul Hossain, Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Dhaka and a Researcher of ARK Foundation showcased recent research works conducted by the organisation in different sectors.
ARK Foundation also announced two research grants for students and early career researchers on the occasion of the launching of the network. Information about the grants and membership opportunity will be available on the website and social media of HERN.
The launching ceremony was also joined by academics, experts, researchers, development professionals, and students from different institutions.