We’re pleased to introduce Sundas Ishfaq, who recently joined Accountability Lab Pakistan in the Islamabad office as an intern working on Integrity Idol, the Accountability Incubator and a variety of research and writing. Sundas is originally from Kashmir, undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places on earth.
She grew up in Rawalpindi, with 1 brother and 2 sisters, and because of an uncle who is currently working in development sector, found an interest in social and political change from an early age. She told us: “Growing up, I always heard discussions on inequalities and corruption in our society, and living in Pakistan I couldn’t avoid the symptoms of the immense political imbalances in our country. Politicians and government servants are always considered the most corrupt individuals, which is unfortunate. I knew from a young age that I wanted to do something about it.”
Sundas graduated from Federal Urdu university Islamabad before studying for an M.Phil in environmental economics at the Pakistan Institute of Development Economics in 2016. Before joining the Lab, Sundas worked on an upcoming book: “The Political Economy of Suicides in Pakistan” and contributed to a paper entitled: “Comparative Analysis of Quality of Education in Pakistan”.
We asked Sundas why she joined the Lab and she told us: “I chose Accountability Lab for its unique ideas and the efforts it is making to build a transparent and honest society. In Pakistan, corruption and lack of accountability are deeply ingrained in social, economic, and political structures. If you look at all the relevant indices and measures, including TI’s Corruption Perception Index, the World Bank’s Doing Business Indicators and other political stability scorecards, you can see the irrefutable evidence of corruption in Pakistan.”
Sundas also has some great ideas for how to address these challenges: “A course correction requires a greater awareness of how corrupt attitudes and behaviors, and self-serving, rent-seeking approaches are hurting the fabric of our society. If this phenomenon persists, there is little hope in the future of our country for the generations to come. We also need to cultivate empathy and a popular sense of responsibility for positive change in Pakistan. This is what the Lab is trying to do and I’m excited to be part of it!”
Welcome aboard Sundas!
Read more about opportunities at the Accountability Lab in Pakistan and around the world here.
If you would like to be considered for an internship position in Pakistan, please email a CV and
cover letter to [email protected]