Associate Professor Udoy Saikia is a Social Demographer with postgraduate degrees from London School of Economics,UK, International Institute for Population Sciences, India and PhD from Flinders University, Australia. He has a long interest in research related to population dynamics, human wellbeing and sustainable development. Associate Prof Saikia has successfully completed a number of international research projects in the Asia and the Pacific region which includes Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste and India. He has published over 50 articles, chapters and letters in scholarly journals and books, or as refereed conference papers or reports. The “wellbeing index” which is the most innovative part of his research has been the core focus of a number of recent Human Development Reports published by the United Nations. Most recently in his role as the Lead Author and the Team Leader, Associate Prof Saikia has completed the research project leading to the production of the UN National Human Development Report, Timor-Leste 2018- a report which focuses on policy pathways to achieve demographic dividend. His research leadership in his area of expertise has been evident in a series of successful research collaborations, both at national and international level leading to receiving a total research grant of Australian $542,624.00 till date from several funding agencies. He has successfully supervised 9 PhD students (5 as Principal Supervisor) so far. He received “Vice Chancellors Award for Excellence in teaching, 2011” and “Citations for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning, 2012”, Office of Learning and Teaching, Government of Australia. He served as the Vice President of Australian Population Association, the peak professional body of population research in Australia, for two consecutive terms (2011-1015).
Oxford Poverty and Human Initiative (OPHI) fellowship 2014, Summer School- Mutidimensional Poverty Analysis, University of Oxford.
Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning 2012 awarded by the Office for Learning and Teaching, Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, Government of Australia.
Theo Murphy High Flyers Think Tank Award, 2012 Australian Academy of Sciences;
Vice-Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching 2011, Flinders University;
London School of economics (Indian Friends) Award 1994,
Irmgard Coninx Research Grant Award (6th Berlin Roundtables on "Population Politics", Germany) 2007;
Scholarship for IUSSP-MPID, Max Planck Institute, Rostock, Germany, 2007;
Ron Lister Fellow 2008, University of Otago, New Zealand.
I have knowledge, expertise and skills in both quantitative and qualitative research. Understanding population dynamics and how to measure their wellbeing at individual as well as household level is key to my research. In the last ten years I have, to my credit published over 50 publications, comprising peer reviewed papers based on original research, commissioned reports and book chapters and several conference papers on population and development issues. My most recent research project in my role as the Lead Author led to the production of the Timor-Leste National Human Development Report (NHDR) 2018, published by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) consists of seven chapters. The “wellbeing index” which is the most innovative part of my recent research has been included in the form of a Chapter in the Hand book of Statistics, Integrated Population Biology and Modelling, Part A, Volume 39, 1st Edition under Section V: Human Inequality Measures and Well Being (web link).
I have developed my research identity, built around “evidence-based policy research”. I started this strongly with my collaboration with the UNDP, Papua New Guinea for research leading to the production of the Bougainville Human Development Report 2007. Since the completion of this research project my progress as a research leader in my area of expertise has been evident in a series of successful research collaborations, both at national and international level leading to receiving a total research grant of Australian $542,624.00 till date from several funding agencies.
UNDP internship - Timor Leste - OCT 2011
JC Caldwell Research Grant - FEB 2011
Australian Population Association Conference Travel Award - SEP 2012
My key contribution to the community is highly related to my academic profession that focuses on population and development issues in developing countries. As the founder member and advisor to South Australians Supporting Children and Women in Assam, (SASCWA), I have successfully initiated an ongoing community based project on early childhood development with the aims to address the extremely high rate of child mortality among tribal communities in Assam, Northeast India. SASCWA has developed a strong partnership with local research and community organisations in Assam and so far has successfully established a Toy Library for the socio-economically disadvantaged children in two villages. This library facilitates around 150 children in 70 households. The project has been running successfully and we have extended our work to women welfare too. Recently we have given financial assistance to buy two sewing machines to the community. It is expected that these machines will help the women in generating income. SASCWA has also extended its work to another tribal village in Assam and recently we have funded three primary schools in this remote community to buy infrastructure and books for the students and salaries for three teachers on an ongoing basis. To generate funding for SASCWA, I have been actively involved in organising various fundraising events in Adelaide