Welcome to the FES Bangladesh Office

New publication is out now !!

Geopolitics of the Pandemic- The Bangladesh Scene

The corona pandemic has been transforming the global order, and Bangladesh is one of the players. There are lots of changes happening in geopolitics – e.g. global powers are weakened, new alliances are built, regionalism is getting more momentum, vaccines have become an issue of global politics, etc. In this situation, some critical questions such as where Bangladesh stands, how Bangladesh is managing the socio-economic and health loss, how effective are those policy and administrative initiatives to manage the crisis, which countries and actors are beside Bangladesh in this unprecedented situation, and why are they with Bangladesh – are circling on our mind. This paper by Prof Ali Riaz analyzes the context of Bangladesh and responds to those questions, and at the end, the author provides four alternatives in moving ahead in the post-corona global political environment: status quo, muddling through, revising the course, or a radical realignment.

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Job Advertisement_ Assistant Communication & Project Officer

FES Bangladesh is recruiting an Assistant Communication and Project Officer for 6 months.

FES Bangladesh is looking for an enthusiastic and self-motivated communication expert to foster a steady flow of communication and to support the Resident Representative for the FES Bangladesh office.

Click here to see the full advertisement.

Closing date for the application: 19 May 2021.

Photo Credit: Tritiyo Matra, Chanel i

COVID-19 & Geopolitics: Marc Saxer discussion in Tritiyo Matra 

Recently, Head of FES Asia Department Marc Saxer along with Professor Ali Riaz joined together on the television talk show Tritiyo Matra for a constructive discussion on how COVID-19 is reshaping the geopolitics around the world.

The corona crisis has revealed the geopolitical, economic, ideological, and cultural fault lines of our time. It has made it clear that we need to rethink the structure of the globalized world. In an interconnected world, pandemics can and do spread across borders at high speed and global supply chains can all too easily be cut. Thus, our financial markets are getting vulnerable. How will this affect geopolitics? Is this an end of globalization?  

Click the link below to find out:


© istock / da-kuk

Leapfrogging to a COVID-proof smart workplace

The Corona epidemic around the world is forcing us to make the use of technology one step further. While ensuring the safety of employees in the workplace is an essential aspect, digital media is becoming popular for professional needs. This may be adding one more positive footstep in opening the door to some new possibilities in fulfilling the dream of building a digital Bangladesh.


This is an article about the optimism of how COVID-19 has been shaping our future through digital aspects. This has been written by two young optimist souls, Md. Rubaiyath Sarwar & Shakil Ahmed.


Md. Rubaiyath Sarwar is an expert on systemic solutions to poverty challenges and the Managing Director of Innovision Consulting and Chairman of the Value Chain Capacity Building Network for Asia and the Pacific. 

Shakil Ahmed is an educator, futurist, and storyteller and part of the leadership team at Acumen Academy Bangladesh.


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COVID 19 impact: LIFE vs LIVELIHOOD? The dilemma facing Bangladeshi RMG workers in re-opened factories

COVID-19 has not only trembled our health sector but also crashed on Economic factors. One of the major contributions to Bangladesh's national GDP comes from the RMG sector which has been facing a very critical situation. On one hand, there is a pressure of competing in the International market to reach the supplier demand, on the other hand, lack of enough commodities to ensure the health safety of the workers has created an unsolvable dilemma while reopening the factories.

This is an article which is written by Dil Afrose Jahan, based on interviews of multiple level stakeholders undermining the RMG sector. Dil Afrose Jahan is an Investigative Journalist and Media Trainer of Bangladesh. She is also an International Center for Journalists Fellow.

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Are universities ready to meet the demand of the labour market?

Although Bangladeshi universities have been an important part of Bangladesh over the last 50 years, contributing to independence, the democratic movement and the building of the nation, they currently face increasing challenges. Worsening teacher-student relations, a lack of innovation in teaching and research and a lack of preparedness to embrace recent developments have made them lag behind. Extensive reforms are necessary for universities to better respond to the demands of the labour markets in a changing world.

As a response,  Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, Bangladesh  and the Centre for Genocide Studies (CGS) at University of Dhaka have conducted a dialogue programme on tertiary education reforms at universities in 2014. Have a read on the regional website on what has been achieved since then!'

Delegation visit to Germany!

Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) have great potential for success in Bangladesh. So far however, they have lacked the support and possibilities to really take advantage of their opportunities. Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, Bangladesh has thus been working in cooperation with local actors towards facilitating Bangladeshi SMEs.

Recently, FES organized an inspirational exchange visit to Germany for a group of Bangladeshi experts to draw from German experiences of successful SME-support.

Read the story from the delegation visit to Germany on our regional web page.

New publication released!

Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, Bangladesh and Centre for Development and Employment Research are proud to present our new study "Employment, Labour Force Participation and Education: Towards Gender Equality in Bangladesh". The authors, Rushidan I Rahman, PHD and Rizwanul Islam, have conducted a quantitative study on the role of women and their possibilities in the labour force in the fast developing economy of Bangladesh. Based on the results, they have made a number of policy recommendations on how to reduce gender inequality in the country.

Find it here: Employment, Labour Force Participation and Education

Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, Bangladesh and Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) are proud of presenting a newly published study titled “Graduating LDCs in an Evolving WTO: Options and Strategies”. The authors (Professor Mustafizur Rahman and Dr. Debapriya Bhattarcharya) have analysed recent developments and reform initiatives in the WTO from the perspectives of "graduating LDCs". They made suggestions on how to safeguard trade interests in the course of losing the LDC status. FES Geneva Office will launch the study in the WTO Public Forum in Geneva, October 2019.
Stay tuned for updates after the launch!

Read the study right here: http://library.fes.de/pdf-files/bueros/genf/15546.pdf

Discussion among participants from the first 2017 cohort of the Academy of Work, Dhaka, April 2017. Photo by FES/Allison Sarah Joyce.

Long-term education and labour rights are the focus of FES in Bangladesh

A participatory higher education system and a prosperous and socially just labour market are at the core of the ongoing work by the Dhaka-based team of Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in Bangladesh.

Given the evolution of the labour economy, new models of representation are essential to effectively safeguard workers’ rights. In Bangladesh, the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung is bringing its wide experience of social democracy and social justice to bear in collaborating with the country’s workers, employer, thinkers, students and government representatives.

A flagship programme for FES in Bangladesh is the Academy of Work (AoW), a cross-sector three-month residential training programme for emerging young leaders from the trade union movement. The programme is implemented in partnership with two institutes, one focusing on labour studies (BILS), the other on governance and democracy (BIGD). It focuses on industrial relations, the economy and decent work along the global value chain. 

Read more on FES Asia's webpage.

Bangladesh Office


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The FES Bangladesh Office

"We want to support a social, economic, ecologically sustainable and participatory development of Bangladesh and strengthen regional as well as international dialogues with Bangladesh.” (Michael Sommer, Vice Chairman).

Together with its partners, the activities of FES in Bangladesh aims to facilitate inclusive dialogues on social justice with a focus on labour rights, futures of work and economy as well as higher education. Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD), Dhaka University (DU), Bangladesh Institute for Labour Studies (BILS), SME Foundation, Awaj Foundation and Karmajibi Nari (KN) are some of the trusted partners of FES in Bangladesh.

Since 2013, FES Bangladesh has, together with our partners conducted research, organised policy dialogues, seminars and trainings in order to break borders and build bridges. We aim to create innovative exchanges and to shape transformation processes in a rapidly changing world.

Priority areas and activities

FES Bangladesh and its partners regularly organize policy dialogues, seminars, workshops and trainings on different topics.

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FES in Asia

FES’s focus in Asia is the promotion of democratic principles and the social dimension of economic development. In the past few years, the foundation has also given increasing importance to the international dialogue within Asia.

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FES Bangladesh

In April 2014, the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) officially opened its office in Dhaka/Bangladesh. Together with its partners, the work of FES in Bangladesh aims at facilitating inclusive dialogues on social justice with a focus on labour rights, sustainable development and international cooperation.

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Our recent activities in Bangladesh

To learn more about FES Bangladesh and our most recent activities follow and like our Facebook Page.

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Selected Events

Selected Publications

  • Geopolitics of the Pandemic- The Bangladesh Scene Read more …
  • Tracking Media Coverage of Women Trade Union Leaders During the COVID-19 Pandemic Read more …
  • The Impact of COVID-induced Economic Crisis on Employment and Labour Market in Bangladesh Read more …
  • Development of SMEs in Bangladesh: Lessons From The German Experience Read more …