Ishrat Hossain

Ms Ishrat Hossain

Job Market Candidate

Research topic:
Communal Violence in the Bangladesh-Myanmar Borderlands
Curriculum vitae:

Research Themes:
Community International relations Religion Groups, Identities and Social Movements Violence, security and conflict 

Areas of expertise

Conflict, Civil War, Foreign Policy Analysis, International Relations Theory, Myanmar, Bangladesh

Academic Profile

Ishrat is a Commonwealth Scholar (2016) pursuing her DPhil in International Relations as a member of Linacre College. Her research explores dynamics of communal violence in the borderlands areas focusing on the Bangladesh-Myanmar border. She is particularly interested in the conflict/peace nexus among the Buddhist and Muslim population in South Asia.

Before starting her DPhil at Oxford, Ishrat worked as a public information expert and political analyst. Most recently she was the Head of New Media at UNDP Bangladesh's Country Office. Prior to joining UNDP, Ishrat worked briefly as the Political Advisor to the German ambassador in Bangladesh. She has also worked for a number of development organisations and diplomatic missions in Bangladesh starting her career as the Communications officer of the joint communications unit of British High Commission and DFID in 2009.

She received her BA and MA degree in Literature from University of Dhaka and a second MA in International Relations from the Australian National University (ANU), Canberra where she was an Endeavour scholar. She graduated with first-class honours from ANU in 2013 and wrote an award-winning thesis on Burmese foreign policy restructuring  and its impact on Bangladesh-Myanmar relations.


English (Fluent)

Bengali (Native speaker)

Hindi (Intermediate)

Urdu (Limited)

German (Beginner) 

Teaching specialism, interests and experience

  • South Asian Politics
  • International Relations Theory 
  • Peace and Conflict Studies
  • Researching Violence


Commonwealth Scholarship 2016 -2020, Commonwealth Scholarship Commission, UK
Cyril Foster Travel Grant, Department of Politics and International Relations, 2019
Oxford-Burma Visiting Funds, both Hilary and Trinity rounds 2018 (Research grant to conduct field work in Bangladesh-Myanmar border)
Commonwealth Scholarship Study Travel Grant, 2017 - 2018
MAIR Prize, the Australian National University, Department Prize for best thesis in the programme, 2013
Endeavour Postgraduate Award (Masters) 2012 - 2013, Australian Government Scholarship
Other Awards
LSE PhD Studentship 2016, Full tuition fees and maintenance for four years (declined)


Book Chapter

  • Farrelly, N and Hossain, I (2014); From Bangladesh: Considering Another Side of the Rakhine Conflict in Nick Cheesman and Htoo Kyaw Win (Ed.) Communal Violence in Myanmar, MKS Publishing, Yangon 

Book Reviews

Other Publications

  • Ishrat Hossain (2019). Buddhist-Muslim Relations in Southeast Bangladesh in the Shadow of the Rohingya Crisis, Briefing Paper for the The X-Border Local Research Network.The Asia Foundation, USA
  • Ishrat, Hossain (2018). Bangladesh balances between big brothers China and India, East Asia Forum 
  • Ishrat Hossain (2018). Where Buddhism meets Islam: Communal Dynamics along the Bangladesh-Myanmar Borderlands, Lead article for the Common Knowledge Magazine, Commonwealth Scholarship Commission, UK 

Conference Papers and Presentations

Conference Presentations

'Researching Communal Violence' at The Question of Violence: Independent Social Research Foundation (ISRF) Annual Workshop. St Hugh's College, Oxford, September 2019

‘Communal Relations in Bangladesh-Myanmar Borderland in the Shadow of the Rohingya Crisis’ at the 13th International Burma Studies Conference, Bangkok, August 2018

'Conflict Diffusion in the Bangladesh-Myanmar Borderlands' at Oxford-SOAS Graduate Student Workshop on New Directions on Research on Myanmar. St. Antony's College, Oxford, May 2017

Invited talks

'Fragile Borders, Changing Communities: Rohingya Crisis and Buddhist-Muslim Relations in the Bangladesh-Myanmar Borderland’ at 60th Anniversary of the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission: Research Impact Event, The Royal Society, London, May 2019

'Higher Education in the Rohingya refugee camps’ at Extending the Welcome: Symposium on Long-term Approaches to Supporting Refugees and at-risk Scholars in Higher Education, University of Edinburgh, March 2019

‘Fragile Borders, Changing Communities: Impact of the Rohingya Crisis on the Bangladesh-Myanmar Border’ at Interactive workshop organised by the Association of Commonwealth Universities, London Metropolitan University, January 2019

Panel on 'Youth Interfaith Engagement'  at G20 Interfaith Summit. Potsdam, June 2017