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Dr Nasima Akhter

Assistant Professor (Research)

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Assistant Professor (Research) in the Department of Anthropology  
Fellow in the Durham Research Methods Centre  
Fellow of the Wolfson Research Institute for Health and WellbeingF012 


Dr Nasima Akhter is an Assistant Professor (Research) in the department of Anthropology with a research focus on health inequality, food security, maternal and child nutrition, and evaluation of interventions. She has over 15 years’ experience in global health and nutrition, livelihood interventions, and currently works across applied health research projects and trials in various contexts. Her PhD from UCL Institute for Global Health, UK, assessed impact of the global food price crisis on affordability of a nutritionally adequate diet by socioeconomic groups in rural Nepal. She leads the Anthropology Interdisciplinary Research Methods Team, and contributes to enhance capacity for research on food and nutrition security, research methods, statistical concepts and analytical approaches. In Bangladesh, she contributed to the Helen Keller International Bangladesh’s Nutritional Surveillance Project, Homestead Food Production Program, and various evaluation projects (1997-2007). She is experienced in project design, plan and implementation, and completed consultancy projects for the WHO, UNHCR, Save the Children, Oxfam Canada among others. She is a fellow of the Durham Research Methods Centre and a member of the Durham Biostatistics unit. She is a Section Editor (Nutrition) for the Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition | About( a BMC (part of Springer Nature) journal.

Current Research
  • Kate Hampshire, Adetayo Kasim, Nasima Akhter, Janelle Wagnild, Dr Heather Hamill, Elizabeth David-Barrett, Simon Mariwah, Gerry Mshana, Daniel Amoako-Sakyi, Graeme Ackland, Edmund Chattoe-Brown. “Analysis and Publication of WHO Research Data on Substandard & Falsified medicines”. Funder: World Health Organization, September-December 2020. 
  • Kate Hampshire, Adetayo Kasim, Nasima Akhter, Michele Castelli, Elsbeth Robson, Kassahun Alemu, Alister Munthali, Prof Simon Mariwah, Ms Nuzhat Choudhury. Research on Factors influencing Community Health Workers’ Effectiveness. Funder: Save the Children, Nov 2019-Oct 2020. 
  • What are the health and health inequalities impacts of the Big Local community empowerment initiative in England? NIHR Public Health Research, 2018 – 2021.
  • Preventing cardiac damage in patients treated for breast cancer: a phase 3 randomised, open label, blinded endpoint, and superiority trial of enalapril to prevent Anthracycline-induced Cardiotoxicity (PROACT). NIHR Research for Patient Benefit, 2017-2019.

Previous Projects

  • Health Inequalities in an Age of Austerity, Leverhulme Trust Research Leadership Grant, (2013-2018). PI: Professor Clare Bambra.
  • ‘Differential acculturation and its impact on wellbeing among Bangladeshi migrants in the North-East and South' (London) UK. PI: Professor Gillian Bentley. This project aimed to assess how British-Bangladeshis adapt to life in different parts of the UK, and whether their experiences as first- or second-generation migrants have an effect on health and wellbeing.
  • Nutritional Surveillance Project, Helen Keller International Bangladesh (1997-2007)
  • Systematic review of "Which public health interventions are effective in reducing morbidity, mortality and health inequalities from infectious diseases amongst children in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs)", Collaborative project with Centre for Global Health Inequalities Research (CHAIN), Department of Sociology and Political Science, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Norway; Durham University and Newcastle University. (May 2019-April 2020)
  • Determinants of quality of diet among rural households in Bangladesh. Collaborative project between Wolfson Research Institute for Health and Wellbeing, Durham University and School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, University of Tokyo. 2019-2020.


Research interests

  • Health inequality
  • Migrant Health
  • Global health and nutrition
  • Food security and livelihood
  • Evaluation of interventions

Research groups

Awarded Grants

  • 2019: Places and Communities, WSA WP1: What is known? Expert views and research synthesis(£6078.27 from National Institute for Health Research)
  • 2019: Scoping exercise for building partnership and exploring NGO data availablity and access in accelerating developmental impact in Bangladesh & Ethiopia(£14668.00 from ESRC Centre for Social and Economic Research on Innovation in Genomics (INNOGEN))
  • 2018: PACT Evaluation(£17925.00 from Education Endowment Foundation)
  • 2015: Evaluation of Wellbeing Service(£81884.00 from Durham County Council)


Authored book

Journal Article


Supervision students