Iffat Idris

Iffat Idris

International Development Department
Research Fellow, GSDRC

Contact details

International Development Department
School of Government
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Iffat Idris has extensive experience of working in the international development sector, notably with the UN System and World Bank.  Her areas of focus include governance, conflict analysis, disaster management, capacity development and social protection.  She moved back to the UK after 13 years based in Pakistan, and since January 2016 has been a Research Fellow at GSDRC.


  • PhD in Political Science 1999
  • MA in Political Science 1995
  • BA in English Literature and Sociology 1993


Upon completion of her doctorate at the University of Hull, Dr Idris was appointed Assistant Professor in the International Relations Dept., Fatima Jinnah Women’s University, Pakistan, where she taught Master's courses on defence and on political Islam. In 2000 she became Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Strategic Studies (Islamabad), focusing her research on the Middle East and the US-led 'war on terror'.   She joined a UNDP regional governance programme in 2001, and since then has worked in the international development sector.

Iffat was appointed Research and Communications Director for the Asian Development Bank (Pakistan), Governance Unit in 2003.  She focused on decentralization, justice sector and gender reforms.  In 2006 she went freelance, and spent the next ten years working on diverse assignments for a range of national and international development organizations, notably the UN System and the World Bank.  Issues covered include disaster management, conflict analysis, capacity development, social protection as well as governance.

Since 2012 she has been a consultant for the World Bank on right to information in South Asia.  She supported the passage of strong RTI laws in two provinces in Pakistan, and has been assisting the Government of Bangladesh to improve RTI implementation.

After 13 years living in Pakistan, Iffat moved back to the UK in 2013.  In January 2016 she joined GSDRC as a Research Fellow.


Research interests:

  • Conflict analysis
  • Political Islam
  • Transparency and right to information 

Other activities

  • Co-Chair South Asia Transparency Advisor Group (TAG)
  • Consultant (right to information), World Bank


Idris, I. (2016),Building social cohesion in post-conflict situations(GSDRC Helpdesk Research Report 1332), Birmingham, UK: GSDRC, University of Birmingham.

Idris, I. (2016), Economic impacts of humanitarian aid, (GSDRC Helpdesk Research Report 1327), Birmingham, UK: GSDRC, University of Birmingham.

Idris, I. (2015), ‘Pakistan Country Paper’ in Empowerment through Information: The Evolution of Transparency Regimes in South Asia, Dhaka, Transparency Advisory Group.

Rana, N. A., Idris, I., Touqeer, I. (2013), Pakistan Policy Note No. 13, ‘Revamping governance’, Washington DC; World Bank. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/2013/06/18014839/revamping-governance

Idris, I. (2006), ‘Settling the Kashmir Conflict: The Internal Dimension’, in Sidhu, Asif and Samii eds. Kashmir: New Voices, New Approaches,Boulder, Colorado, Lynne Rienner.

Malik, I. (2002), Kashmir: Ethnic Conflict, International Dispute, Karachi, Oxford University Press.

View all publications in research portal