I work at the intersection of public policy practice and research, helping turn research into policy guidance and policy demand into new avenues for research.
Presently, I’m based at the University of Oxford’s Blavatnik School of Government, where I work as a Cities Economist for the International Growth Centre’s Cities that Work initiative. I work with a team of economists to provide flexible, demand-driven, and evidence-based policy analysis to, and off, developing cities, mainly in Asia and Africa. I cover the unit’s work in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, and Tanzania.
Apart from my day job, I also to write on the political economy of development mainly on Pakistan for Dawn and co-host The World Isn’t Flat Podcast. I also occasionally talk to the press about policy issues in Pakistan, with quotes published in BBC World Service and Gulf Times, along with television appearances on Dawn News.
You can follow me on twitter at @ShahrukhWani and email me at s[dot]rukh[at]lse.ac.uk.
- “Social Networks and Tax Compliance: A Conceptual Toolkit.” Working Paper
- “Urban Governance Institutions: Policy Options for Fast Growing Cities” Version 1. Cities that Work Policy Framing Paper. International Growth Centre (with Astrid Haas, LSE).
Note: I don’t represent the views of Oxford or IGC in my conversations with the press
- (Text, English) Comments for Dawn on changes to the federal budget by the Pakistani government in Sep 2018.
- (Text, Urdu) Interviewed by BBC’s Urdu service on Pakistan’s stock market stabilisation fund in June 2019.
- (Text, Urdu) Interviewed by BBC’s Urdu service on Imran Khan’s first year in office in August 2019.
- (Video, Urdu) On Dawn News’s primetime news program Newswise to talk about a new decentralisation law in Punjab. 10th of May, 2019 (video here)
- (Video, English) On Indus Special with Ejaz Haider to talk about urban governance in Pakistan. 16th May 2019. (video here)
- (Video, Urdu) On Dawn News’s current affairs talkshow, Zara Hut Kay, to talk about Pakistan’s agreement with the IMF. 13th of May, 2019. (video below; segment between 5-min till 25-min mark)
Selected Articles in Newspapers and Blogs:
Note: My work with DAWN is independent from my work with Oxford and IGC.
On Pakistan for Dawn:
- So, what comes after the IMF?, DAWN, June 10, 2019
- Why Pakistan will go to the IMF again, and again and again, DAWN, October 16, 2018
- Has Punjab just taken a step towards unlocking the potential of its cities?, DAWN, May 10, 2019
- How do you pay for a programme like PTI’s Ehsas?, DAWN, April 24, 2019
- Imran Khan envisions a Pakistani welfare state. Is it possible?, DAWN, August 28, 2018
- Are insecure property rights holding back Pakistan’s economy?, DAWN, Jan 17, 2019
On Pakistan, for others:
- For too long, Pakistani schools have been a means to provide jobs, rather than education, The Guardian Tue 27 Jun 2017
- Reforming Pakistan’s tax system: Evidence-based suggestions, International Growth Centre, 3rd Dec 2018.
- The Case of Culture of Learning for Pakistan, Alif Ailaan, May 28th, 2018
Anything but Pakistan:
- Using Markets for Development? The Potential of Advanced Market Commitments, London School of Economics Blog. January 30th, 2018
- What Does the Rise of Populism Mean for International Development?,London School of Economics Blog. March 23rd, 2018
- Getting the right institutions in place to run Africa’s cities efficiently, The Conversation Africa. (with Astrid Haas, LSE) May 15, 2019
Corresponding address: International Growth Centre (IGC), 1st floor, Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford, Radcliffe Observatory Quarter, Woodstock Road, Oxford OX2 6GG, United Kingdom.
Conflict of interest: My current position at Oxford is funded by IGC, which is majority funded by Britain’s Department for International Development (DFID). My former position as a research assistant at LSE was funded by the UN-Habitat. Most of my writing is pro-bono and independent of my work at Oxford and IGC. I have, however, received compensation in May 2018 for an article from DAI Global as part of a DFID funded project in Pakistan. I have also received compensation from Pakistan Herald Limited, the publishers of the Dawn newspaper. However, this compensation was stopped on my request to prevent conflict of interest.
The content of this website is licensed under the Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 UK: England & Wales (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 UK). The header image is by Maciej Dakowicz, source here.