Md. Nadiruzzaman


The Aftermath of the Cyclone Sidr Disaster in Bangladesh


Md. Nadiruzzaman (Nadir) completed his PhD on communities affected by the Cyclone Sidr disaster in Bangladesh. Born in Dhaka the capital city of Bangladesh, Nadir studies how local communities that have been marginalised in society are able to overcome immense struggles due to socioeconomic inequality. Partially inspired by his previous research for his Master’s thesis at Durham University into the power dynamics between local and national government in Bangladesh, Nadir’s PhD research examines the struggles of marginalised communities in the aftermath of the Cyclone Sidr disaster. Working closely with communities in some of the areas hardest hit by Cyclone Sidr, he was able to assess the risks they face, while identifying ways they could overcome them, such as through NGO interventions that can assist communities in preparing for and building resilience to disasters.


After the Cyclone Sidr disaster itself caused an immense amount of damage in Bangladesh, Nadir discovered that people faced numerous risks during its aftermath. Those struggling economically in Bangladesh, such as fishing communities, move to areas that are more vulnerable to the impacts of cyclones. But fishermen in Bangladesh face not only the destruction caused by natural hazards, but also must struggle against economic and social inequality. 
Nadir’s research helped give fishermen who were socially marginalised a political voice where before they had no way of communicating their struggles. The research gained local and national attention from the media and government which changed the understanding of local civil society about the fishing community. In response to Nadir’s work, local government began to enforce existing laws that protected fishermen.

Not only were people struggling to maintain their livelihoods after Cyclone Sidr, but troubles with obtaining sufficient housing after the disaster was also experienced by many people living in south Bangladesh. Based on eight months of ethnographic field work in Gabtola, Nadir found that housing provided by government was not sufficiently resilient to withstand the effects of cyclone hazards, nor cost-effective or conducive to the livelihoods or public health of communities. Findings from this research published in the scientific journal Natural Hazards can assist public authorities and NGOs in revising and improving upon their post-disaster housing programmes to better deal with future disasters.

For more about Nadir’s research:

Recent peer reviewed publications

  • Shewly, HJ and Nadiruzzaman, M. 2018. Invisible journeys across India-Bangladesh borders and bubbles of illicit networks: stories of cross-border rural-urban migration and economic linkages, in F Chiodelli, T Hall and R Hudson edited, Corrupt Places: The Illicit in the Governance and Development of Cities and Regions, Routledge: Regions and Cities book series. pp 37-53.
  • Lu, X., Wrathall, D., Sundsøy, P.R., Nadiruzzaman, M., Wetter, E., Iqbal, A., Qureshi, T., Tatem, A., Canright, G., Engø-Monsen, K., and Bengtsson, L. 2016. Detecting climate adaptation with mobile network data in Bangladesh: anomalies in communication, mobility and consumption patterns during cyclone Mahasen, Climate Change. DOI: 10.1007/s10584-016-1753-7
  • Lu, X., Wrathall, D., Sundsøy, P.R., Nadiruzzaman, M., Wetter, E., Iqbal, A., Qureshi, T., Tatem, A., Canright, G., Engø-Monsen, K., and Bengtsson, L. 2016. Unveiling Hidden Migration and Mobility Patterns in Climate Stressed Regions: A Longitudinal Study of Six Million Anonymous Mobile Phone Users in Bangladesh, Global Environmental Change, 38: 1-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2016.02.002
  • Nadiruzzaman, M. and Wrathall, D. 2015. Participatory Exclusion – Cyclone Sidr and Its Aftermath, Geoforum, 64: 196-204. DOI: 10.1016/j.geoforum.2015.06.026
  • Tanner, T. Lewis, D., Wrathall, D., Bronen, R., Cradock-Henry, N., Huq, S., Lawless, C., Nawrotzki, R.., Prasad, V., Rahman, M.A., Alaniz, R., King, K., McNamara, K., Nadiruzzaman, M., Henry-Shepard, S. and Thomalla, F. 2015. Livelihood Resilience in the Face of Climate Change, Nature Climate Change, vol I: 23-26. DOI:10.1038/nclimate2431
  • Nadiruzzaman, M and Paul, BK. 2013. Post-Sidr Public Housing Assistance in Bangladesh: A Case Study, Environmental Hazards, 12 (2): 166-179. DOI: 10.1080/17477891.2012.759523
  • Paul, BK and Nadiruzzaman, M. 2013. Religious Interpretations for the Causes of the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, Asian Profile, 41 (1): 67-77.
  • Published Reports and Magazine Articles

    Selected Consultancy Experiences

    • November 2017 (5 days), Local Leadership in the First 100 Days of Rohingya Response, led by Nirapad and Humanitarian Advisory Group, funded by Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
    • 01 Aug – 30 Sept 2017 (10 Days), Climate Change Expert in the ‘Inclusion of Climate Dimension in Ministry Budget Framework’, led by the Ministry of Finance, Government of Bangladesh, with close coordination of UNDP.
    • 05 Feb – 04 May 2017 (30 Days), Learning, Research and Knowledge Management Advisor in Nobo Jatra Program, a USAID food security program.
    • 06 June 2016 (30 days), Lead Consultant, Baseline study using SenseMaker for MUKTI – II, a Catholic Relief Services (CRS) funded disaster resilience building project at Monpura island, Bhola, Bangladesh.
    • 08 – 18 Jun 2014, Climate Change Specialist in National Urban Poverty Reduction Plan for DFID Bangladesh. I worked as a member of a team of consultants to design an urban development programme for DFID Bangladesh. I specific role was to help designing the climate change component of it.
    • May 2014, Lead Consultant, Impact of Cyclone Mahasen on Children and their Education, Save the Children Australia, Melbourne.
    • Jul ’13 – Feb ’14, Lead Consultant, Study on the DRR-CCA Landscape of Dhaka, Asia Pacific Community Resilience Project World Vision Asia Pacific Region Office, Bangkok. Our report has been published by the World Vision and is a highly viewed item in the
    • May – August 2013, International Theme Leader – Disaster Risk Management, Action Research for Climate Change Adaptation in Bangladesh (ARCAB). I have led a campaign of Child Inclusive Climate Smart Disaster Risk Management (CICSDRM) and presented that in the 4th Divisional Conference on Community Based Adaptation on 22nd August 2013.

    Other Professional Responsibilities and Affiliations

    Research Grants

    • 2017 – 18: ESPA Capacity development Grant to design a module on ‘Ecosystem Services and Disaster’, with Dr. Janet Fisher, University of Edinburgh, £3000.
    • 2017-18: Co-Principal Investigation, Energy on the Move: longitudinal perspectives on energy transitions among marginal populations (a comparative study), ESRC-DFID Development Frontiers Research Fund, £204,658.
    • 2017: Co-awardee, ESRC-IAA funding Scheme (to disseminate findings of Mobile Data, Environmental Extremes and Population Movements (MDEEP), £7,750.
    • 2014-16: Principal Investigator, ESPA-Deltas Capacity Development Fellowship - £100,000 (Jointly funded by DFID, ESRC and NERC, Ref.:
    • March 2013 – present, Joint Principal Investigator, Mobile Data, Environmental Extremes and Population Movements (MDEEP), in collaboration with UNU-EHS, Flowminders and Telenor Group. (Ref.: Rockefeller Foundation, US$50,000; UK-ESRC, US$16,500)
    • 2008-2011: Obtained the Christopher Moyes Memorial Foundation Fellowship through the IHRR to pursue a PhD (Ref: (£75,000)
    • 2012: Charles Wallace Bangladesh Trust (£1000), Sidney Perry Foundation Scholarship (£1500), Hammond Trust Grants (£1500) and Muslim Aid Academic Grant (£500).