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Global Go To Think Tank Index (GGTTI) 2020 launched                    111,75 Think Tanks across the world ranked in different categories.                SDPI is ranked 90th among “Top Think Tanks Worldwide (non-US)”.           SDPI stands 11th among Top Think Tanks in South & South East Asia & the Pacific (excluding India).            SDPI notches 33rd position in “Best New Idea or Paradigm Developed by A Think Tank” category.                SDPI remains 42nd in “Best Quality Assurance and Integrity Policies and Procedure” category.              SDPI stands 49th in “Think Tank to Watch in 2020”.            SDPI gets 52nd position among “Best Independent Think Tanks”.                           SDPI becomes 63rd in “Best Advocacy Campaign” category.                   SDPI secures 60th position in “Best Institutional Collaboration Involving Two or More Think Tanks” category.                       SDPI obtains 64th position in “Best Use of Media (Print & Electronic)” category.               SDPI gains 66th position in “Top Environment Policy Tink Tanks” category.                SDPI achieves 76th position in “Think Tanks With Best External Relations/Public Engagement Program” category.                    SDPI notches 99th position in “Top Social Policy Think Tanks”.            SDPI wins 140th position among “Top Domestic Economic Policy Think Tanks”.               SDPI is placed among special non-ranked category of Think Tanks – “Best Policy and Institutional Response to COVID-19”.                                            Owing to COVID-19 outbreak, SDPI staff is working from home from 9am to 5pm five days a week. All our staff members are available on phone, email and/or any other digital/electronic modes of communication during our usual official hours. You can also find all our work related to COVID-19 in orange entries in our publications section below.    The Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) is pleased to announce its Twenty-third Sustainable Development Conference (SDC) from 14 – 17 December 2020 in Islamabad, Pakistan. The overarching theme of this year’s Conference is Sustainable Development in the Times of COVID-19. Read more…       FOOD SECIRITY DASHBOARD: On 4th Nov, SDPI has shared the first prototype of Food Security Dashboard with Dr Moeed Yousaf, the Special Assistant to Prime Minister on  National Security and Economic Outreach in the presence of stakeholders, including Ministry of National Food Security and Research. Provincial and district authorities attended the event in person or through zoom. The dashboard will help the government monitor and regulate the supply chain of essential food commodities.

Food Security Military Nexus.

Warning on Tobacco Products – Capacity Building within Legislative Framework

Partner: The Union (International Union against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease), Bloomberg Initiative to reduce Tobacco use (BI).
Duration: 2019-20
Locale:  Islamabad
Just like many other low- and middle-income countries, Pakistan is overburdened with serious communicable and non-communicable disease epidemics. Lung, mouth and throat cancers have been increasingly visible in the social strata. The capacity to prevent, control and treat these diseases is hampered by weak health information systems and lack of experienced personnel to provide the information needed to improve both policy and practice. SDPI realizes the shortfall and intends to play vital role in raising awareness and capacity building for policy makers.
Pakistan has been a signatory to Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) since 2004. The government has multiple anti-tobacco laws in place, yet Pakistan is among the top ten countries in the world with prevalence of highest tobacco use. Successful campaigns for reducing tobacco use shows that Graphic Health Warnings (GHW) on tobacco packages increase risk perceptions, reduce the appeal of tobacco use and promote smoking cessation.
Notably, out of over 100 countries with existing textual/pictorial warning laws globally, regional neighbours such as Nepal, and India have 90% and 85% GHW respectively. Through formation of CTCR, and capacity building strategy, we envision to promote robust implementation of 50% and 60% warning, annual rotation of warning, and absence of warning on smokeless and imported tobacco, alongside other best practices in tobacco control as the priority engagements.
Through this project we aspires to achieve; creation of Parliamentarians’ Caucus for Tobacco Control and Regulations (CTCR) to enhance parliamentarians’ capacity to understand issues and laws governing tobacco control regime. Working in close collaboration with the partners and likeminded organizations such as  Tobacco Control Cell at Ministry of National Health Services Regulation and Coordination (TCC, MoNHSRC), we propose development and implementation of robust legislations related to GHWs and its promulgation for imported as well as smoke and smokeless tobacco products. Moreover, awareness campaigns will be organized for policy makers proposing and facilitating the development of adequate GHW Laws. Such laws need to include enhancing capacity for stricter warning laws on tobacco packs, yearly rotation, and resolve to follow best practices in tobacco warning as well as strengthening of anti-tobacco partner groups and networks.
The project seeks to achieve these outcomes through formation of a network of experts from relevant organizations dedicated to look after legislation and policy development including a Parliamentary caucus. SDPI hopes to strengthen existing networks as well as raise new platforms to work on policy front with support from members of network especially Parliamentarians and TCC MoNHSRC for policy development and reform regarding warning on all tobacco products and enhance capacity of related institutes to oversee implementation of GHWs and other legislation for tobacco control.
Purpose: To build and strengthen capacity of legislators and relevant organizations working on policy reform and its implementation for Tobacco Control including issue of GHWs on imported and smokeless tobacco products..
Objective 1. Creation of Parliamentarians’ Caucus for Tobacco Control and Regulations (CTCR) and Networking.
Objective 2. Capacity Building – Facilitate Development and Promulgation of Laws for GHW on all Forms of Tobacco products.

Food Security & Nutrition Analysis 2012-13

Partner: WFP & Ministry of Food Security and Research

Duration: 2012 to 2013

Locale: All districts/ agencies of Pakistan, Islamabad, FATA, GB and AJK

Team Members:  Dr. Abid Qaiyum Suleri, Shakeel Ahmad, Dua Shabbir Sayed


The study aims to capture an updated picture of food security situation in the country since SDPI’s previous food security analysis of 2009, particularly after the floods of 2010-11.

SDPI in collaboration with WFP has been ranking districts of Pakistan on the basis of food security and gives a comparison of the current food security situation with the year 2003. It should also serve as a useful planning tool for designing meaningful social safety nets and evolving a national food security strategy. It will help the government target the most food insecure population while implementing five year plan and social safety net programs. The report also aims to help bilateral donors and friends of Pakistan in targeting their assistance to the most marginalized and poverty stricken areas of Pakistan. It will also help understand the “potential militancy food insecurity nexus” a crucial element to eliminate the root cause of militancy.

The FSA 2003 report, the first of its kind in Pakistan, compared 120 districts of the country on the basis of their food insecurity. The report concluded that 37.6 per cent of rural population was food insecure. The 2010 report revealed a sharp from 2003, when conditions of food security were inadequate in 45 per cent districts (i.e.; 54 out of 120). Almost half of population (48.6 per cent) doesn’t have access to sufficient food for active and healthy life at all times.

Following a selection of indicators related to the three pillars of food security (i.e. food availability, access and utilization), secondary data was collected. Major government surveys such as Pakistan Social and Living Standards Measurement (PSLM) and Household Integrated Economic survey (HIES) were also used. The data was then analyzed to develop a ranking of all the districts of Pakistan with respect to each indicator. An assessment of overall food security was also made using kilo caloric intake (using data from HIES and a food basket determined by the Planning Commission) as the principal indicator.

With the completion of the secondary analysis, a consultation with representatives from relevant provincial departments and ministries was held to incorporate their feedback into the results. To further validate the results, collection of primary data was initiated.


  • To produce a report on the status of Food Security and Nutrition  in Pakistan
  • To provide and up-to-date database on key indicators of food security and nutrition


  • Secondary data analysis (national and provincial surveys)
  • Baseline household surveys
  • Stakeholder consultations
  • Publication of a research report

Food Insecurity in Pakistan 2009

Team Members:  Dr. Abid Qaiyum Suleri

Based on a composite index of the above-mentioned pillars of food security, it is observed that the state of food security in Pakistan has deteriorated since 2003. The conditions for food security are inadequate in 61 percent districts (80 out of 113 districts) of Pakistan. This is a sharp increase from 2003, when conditions for food security were inadequate in 45 percent districts (54 out of 120 districts) of Pakistan. Almost half of the population of Pakistan (48.6 percent) doesn’t have access to sufficient food for an active and healthy life at all times.

The report comes up with substantial evidence that inter and intra provincial disparities exist in terms of food security. FATA has the highest percentage of food insecure population (67.7 percent) followed by Balochistan (61.2 percent), Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) (56.2 percent). The lowest percentage of food insecure population (23.6 percent) is in Islamabad. Among the districts, Dera Bugti in Balochistan has the highest percentage of food insecure people (82.4%). Balochistan has the higher number of districts with worst conditions for food security. The 20 districts of Pakistan with worst conditions for food security include 10 districts from Balochistan, 5 from FATA; 3 from KPK, and 1 from Gilgit Baltistan (GB) and Sindh each. The number of districts from Balochistan in this category has doubled since 2003. Dera Bugti, Musa Khel, Upper Dir, North Waziristan, Kohistan, Muhammand, Dalbadin, South Waziristan, Orakzai, and Panjgur are the 10 districts with worst conditions for food security in Pakistan.

It was concluded that the potential militancy-food security nexus cannot be ignored in Pakistan and requires a change in paradigm where food insecurity should not only be treated merely as a humanitarian issue, but a national security issue.

Further information can be obtained from Dr. Abid Suleri.