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Professor Shailen Nandy

Professor of International Social Policy

+44 (0)29 2087 9675
2.30, Glamorgan Building, King Edward VII Avenue, Cardiff, CF10 3WA
Available for postgraduate supervision


I joined Cardiff University in September 2016 and teach on  a number of undergraduate and post-graduate Social Science modules, and convene modules on International and Comparative Social and Public Policy. I am currently the Social Policy subject lead.

Over the past 20 years my research has focused on different aspects of international development, and on poverty analysis and anti-poverty strategies.  I am also interested in social policy and its role in national development strategies in the era of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Recently completed projects include an ESRC-GRCF-SDAI research project looking at the problem of multiple malnutrition in young children in West and Central Africa, a national situation analysis of child poverty and deprivation in Uganda with UNICEF Uganda, an examination of child poverty among refugee-hosting communities in Uganda with the Economic Policy Research Centre (Uganda) and a British Council Newton Fund grant with colleagues at the CRONICAS research centre in Lima on nutrition dynamics and the double burden of malnutrition in Peru.


Career overview

Prior to joining Cardiff University, I was a Research Fellow at the University of Bristol and member of the Townsend Centre for International Poverty Research, and before that Non-Clinical Research Fellow at the Institute of Neurology, in UCL and a researcher in Bangladesh for BRAC.  I have been a consultant to the WHO, UNICEF, DfID, and other development NGOs in the UK and abroad.

Education and Qualifications

  • 2010: PhD (Social Policy), University of Bristol
  • 2005: MSc Policy Research, University of Bristol
  • 1996: MSc (Econ), London School of Economics
  • 1995: BA (Hons), Economics and International Relations, University of Reading

Academic positions

  • 1999-2016 Research Fellow, School for Policy Studies, University of Bristol
  • 1998-1999 Non-Clinical Research Fellow, Institute of Neurology, UCL, London.
  • 1996-1997 Research Associate, BRAC, Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Speaking engagements

  • November 2016 – “Expressing poverty in all its dimensions according to national definitions: how the Consensual Approach makes monitoring progress towards SGD target 1.2 possible”, Tonga Poverty Conference: Localization of SDG1, Nuku’alofa, Kingdom of Tonga, 21-22 November 2016.
  • November 2016 – “The Impact of Poverty on Health”, Tonga Poverty Conference: Localization of SDG1, Nuku’alofa, Kingdom of Tonga, 21-22 November 2016.
  • May 2016 – UNICEF-CROP-ILO-ECOWAS academic workshop Child Poverty and Social Protection in Western and Central Africa, presented paper “Improving on the Measurement of Global Child Poverty–the Potential of the Consensual Approach”, Abuja, Nigeria.
  • September 2015 – World Social Science Forum: Transforming Global Relations in a Just World, presented paper “Applying the consensual method of estimating poverty in a low income African setting”, Durban, South Africa.
  • September 2015 - H Ekbrand, B Hallerod and S Nandy, From Welfare to Wellbeing: Child Indicators in Research, Policy & Practice 5th International Society for Child Indicators Conference, Having faith in girls – the educational gender gap among Christians, Hindus, and Muslims in 71 low- and middle-income countries and Indian states, University of Cape Town, South Africa.
  • September 2015 D Gordon, R Ibrahim, N Price & S Nandy, From Welfare to Wellbeing: Child Indicators in Research, Policy & Practice 5th International Society for Child Indicators Conference, The Extent and Nature of Child Poverty in Developing Countries, University of Cape Town, South Africa.
  • June 2014 - Foundation for International Studies on Social Security (FISS) 21st International Research Seminar, paper with A Daoud, "Political regimes, corruption and absolute child poverty in India", Stockholm, Sweden.
  • May 2013 - International Society for Child Indicators (ISCI) conference, presented paper “Revisiting progress towards MDG1: assessing the performance of conventional indicators of child hunger”, Seoul National University, Seoul, South Korea.
  • November 2012 - Colloquium on Poverty Definition and Measurement presented paper on “Consensual poverty in Benin”, Centre for the Analysis of South African Social Policy and South African Human Sciences Research Council, Cape Town, South Africa.
  • November 2012 - University of the Western Cape, Poverty and Politics in Middle Income Countries, CROP/University of Bergen/Southern African/Nordic Centre (SANORD), paper: “Policy relevant measurement of poverty in low, middle and high-income countries”, Cape Town, South Africa.
  • May 2009 - Invited commentator, UNICEF CEE/CIS Third Regional Social Policy Workshop, Issyk-Kul, Kyrgyz Republic.
  • October 2008 - Invited commentator, UNICEF CEE/CIS Second Regional Social Policy Workshop, Odessa, Ukraine.
  • August 2008 – Guest speaker, UNICEF Policy Analysis Techniques related to Child Poverty and Disparities workshop, University of Southampton, UK.
  • May 2008 – presentations UNICEF Global Study of Child Poverty & Disparities The ‘Bristol Approach’ to Measuring Child Poverty and Data issues and preliminary findings for Nepal, India and Bangladesh¸ UNICEF South Asia Regional Child Poverty and Disparities Technical Meeting, Kathmandu, Nepal, 7th – 9th May 2008.
  • April 2008 - Invited commentator, Fourth Annual International Conference: Rethinking Poverty: Making Policies that Work for Children conference, held by UNICEF and the Graduate Program in International Affairs at The New School, New York, USA, April 21-23, 2008.
  • April 2008 - Presentation UNICEF Global Study of Child Poverty & Disparities Measuring Child Poverty for Policy Purposes, UNICEF CEE/CIS First Regional Social Policy Workshop, Tashkent, Uzbekistan, 2nd– 4th April 2008.
  • February 2008 - Presentation (with Professor Gordon) The measurement of child poverty and implications for policy, UNICEF West and Central Africa Regional Social Policy Workshop on Child Poverty and Child Protection, Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire.
  • September 2007 – Poster (with Dr J Jaime Miranda) “Overlooking undernutrition? Using a composite indicator of anthropometric failure (CIAF) to assess how underweight misses and misleads the assessment of undernutrition in young children”. One Hundred Years of Tropical Medicine, Meeting the Millennium Development Goals conference, held by the Royal Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, London, UK.
  • April 2007 – “Measuring Child Poverty in the Developing World: the Merits and the Limitations of the ‘Bristol Approach’”,  Keynote paper to Public Policy, Advocacy and Partnerships conference held at the Graduate School of Governance, University of Maastricht.
  • November 2005 – “Child Poverty in a Developing World” Keynote paper to Poverty: Malaise of Development? Conference, University of Chester.
  • April 2003 – “Inequalities in Health in Four Indian States”, Department for International Development workshop, New Delhi.
  • July 2003 – Keynote paper “A New Aggregate Measure of Malnutrition in Young Children” presented at Poverty, Food and Health in Welfare conference, Lisbon, Portugal.
  • April 1999 – “Aspects of the Epilepsy Treatment Gap in Developing Countries” paper to International League Against Epilepsy conference, Marrakech.












Undergraduate modules:

  • Introduction to Social and Public Policy
  • Power Policy and Politics
  • International and Comparative Social and Public Policy

Postgraduate modules:

  • International and Comparative Social and Public Policy
  • Citizenship and Social Policy

Undergraduate and postgraduate dissertation supervision

Recent, current and ongoing projects:

2020-2021 Cardiff University GCRF Small Projects grant,Applying the Consensual Approach to Poverty Assessment in Telangana State, India, with the Council for Social Development and BITS Pilani, Hyderabad.

2019 -2020 Cardiff University GCRF Small Projects grant, Examining poverty in a polarised and unequal society: the potential of the Consensual Approach to poverty research in Brazil, with UNICAMP, Brazil.

2018 - 2019 British Council Newton Fund, Understanding and modelling the distribution of the double burden of malnutrition in Peru with CRONICAS, Cayetano Heredia, Peru.

2018 Cardiff University-ESRC-GCRF Small Project Grant, Nutrition and Population Dynamics in Africa, Asia and Latin America, with CRONICAS.

2017 Cardiff University-ESRC-GCRF Impact Acceleration Project, Developing training tools to assist National Statistical Offices (NSOs) in Low and Middle Income Countries (LMICs) in the collection of data to assess multidimensional poverty for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

2017-2018 ESRC-GCRF Secondary Data Analysis Initiative, Measuring and Mapping the Prevalence and Patterning of Multiple
Malnutrition in Young Children in West and Central Africa, with Dr Marco Pomati and UNICEF Nigeria.

2017-18 UNICEF Uganda, Integration of Child Poverty Analysis in National Statistics, with Townsend Centre for International Poverty Research and University of Bristol.

2017 - UNICEF Iran, Multidimensional Poverty at General Population and Child Levels: Measurement and Methodology, with Townsend Centre for International Poverty Research and University of Bristol.

2015 - 2018 - Wallenberg Foundation, Sweden, A Global Analysis of Poverty and Living Conditions in Low and Middle-Income Countries, with Department of Sociology and Work Science, University of Gothenburg, and University of Bristol.

2015-2019 -  Hilton Foundation, USA, Training Future Leaders to Accelerate Poverty Reduction and Achieve the SDGs, with Fielding School of Public Health, UCLA and University of Bristol.

2016-17 ESRC Impact Acceleration Project, Aiding poverty data and analysis capacity development in the Pacific.