​​Our People

Pakistan​

Dr Zulfiqar A. Bhutta is the Robert Harding Inaugural Chair in Global Child Health at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Co-Director of the SickKids Centre for Global Child Health and the Founding Director of the Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health at the Aga Khan University. He also holds adjunct professorships at several leading universities globally including the Schools of Public Health at Johns Hopkins (Baltimore), Tufts University (Boston), Boston University School of Public Health, University of Alberta as well as the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. He is a designated Distinguished National Professor of the Government of Pakistan and was the Founding Chair of the National Research Ethics Committee of the Government of Pakistan from 2003-2014. Dr Bhutta was a member of the Independent Expert Review Group (iERG) appointed by the UN Secretary General for monitoring global progress in maternal and child health MDGs (2011-2015). He represented the global academic and research organizations on the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations (Gavi) Board and serves on its Evaluation Advisory Committee. Dr Bhutta is a co- Chair of the Global Countdown 2030 Initiative, the co-Chair of the Maternal and Child Health oversight committee of World Health Organization (WHO) Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMRO) and the Chairman of the Coalition of Centres in Global Child Health with its secretariat based at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto. He is a technical member of the recently appointed high-level UN Health and Human Rights committee, an executive committee member of Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health (PMNCH) and a member of the Independent Expert Group producing the Global Nutrition Reports since 2014. 

Dr Bhutta’s research interests include newborn and child survival, maternal and child undernutrition and micronutrient deficiencies. He leads large research groups based in Toronto, Karachi and Nairobi with a special interest in research synthesis, scaling up evidence based interventions in community settings and implementation research in difficult circumstances. In particular his work with community health workers and outreach services has influenced integrated maternal and newborn outreach programs for marginalized populations all over the world. His group’s work with the WHO and PMNCH in developing consensus based essential interventions for women, children and adolescents is the dominant set of agreed interventions guiding global policy. Presently, Professor Bhutta is leading two global academic consortia; one working on improving reproductive, maternal and child health in conflict settings and humanitarian emergencies and the other focused on integrated investments to improve child and adolescent health across the life course. View Profile​​


Dr Sajid Bashir Soofi, MBBS, FCPS is Paediatrician and Public Health Researcher. Currently, he is an Associate Professor at the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health and Associate Director at Centre of Excellence in Women & Child Health, Aga Khan University. He is a clinician researcher and a public health expert with vast experience of community based research & surveys. He has been awarded the prestigious International Health Research Award by the American Academic of Pediatrics in 2010. His research areas includes neonatal and child health with special emphasis on nutrition. The key areas that he has worked over the last decade have been predominantly in large scale nutrition surveys and interventions trials focusing on neonatal & child health and nutrition. He was co-investigators of National Nutrition Surveys 2011, Pakistan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan and Eritrea. His academic bibliography comprises over 60 publications, book chapters, reviews and commentaries. He has published in several high-impact international journals, including Lancet, BMC Research, Journal of Infection and Public Health and Vaccine. Dr Soofi supported National and Provincial EOCs of Pakistan and Afghanistan in generating evidence on polio sero protection level of children to review and improve their operational strategies for eradication of polio from Pakistan. 

Currently, Dr​ Soofi is responsible for the implementation of National Nutrition Survey 2018, Willows Reproductive Health Projects, Stunting Prevention Projects, Polio and Sero Prevalence Surveys and Strengthening MNCH services with financial support from BMGF, Harvard University, World Food Program, Swiss Red Cross and UNICEF in different districts of Pakistan. View​ Profile​


Dr Muhammad Atif Habib, PhD is a Public health expert and holds a faculty position in the department of Paediatrics at the Women and Child Health Division at Aga Khan University. He has vast public health experience and skills and has been involved in multiple national and international maternal, neonatal and child health projects. His research interests include areas in child health with emphasis on nutrition. He has significant experience of developing, implementing and evaluating epidemiological studies and interventions trials on maternal and child health and has also being an integral part of large scale immunization surveys such as National Nutrition Surveys conducted in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Eritrea. His academic bibliography comprised of several high impact peer reviewed publications and technical report and a book chapter. Dr Habib is also a certified trainer for Emergency Nutrition Assessment (ENA), Community Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM) & others. View profile


Dr Jai K Das works as an Assistant Professor for the Division of Women and Child Health and the Section Head of the Section of Public Health and Epidemiology at the Aga Khan University. He holds a bachelor’s in medicine and has done his residency in paediatric surgery and then completed his masters. He is currently pursuing his PhD in population and public health. As a part of the Maternal Child Health team, he has been actively involved in research including community-based trials, qualitative and mixed methods research and also conducting evidence based systematic reviews for various commissioning agencies. He is currently Pakistan’s site director for the Cochrane Collaboration and coordinator for the Maternal Child Link on the Global Health Network. His research interests include interventions to address maternal and child nutrition and infections. He has been a part of the “Global Action Plan for diarrhea and pneumonia-DGAPP” which has been published as a Lancet Series for Childhood Diarrhea and Pneumonia in 2013. He is also a lead author for the recent Lancet series on ‘Maternal and Child Undernutrition- 2013’ and ‘Newborn and Neonatal Health- 2014’ and ‘Stillbirth Series - 2016’. He is the author of more than 100 international peer-reviewed papers and contributed to more than 15 book chapters concerned with international maternal and child health and nutrition. He is also the editor of the book ‘Pakistan, SDGs and Health’. He is on the editorial team of ‘BMC Paediatrics’ and PLoS’. He has worked on various reports which have been used to influence policy both nationally and internationally and has been on guideline committees with the WHO. He holds a strong interest in academics and actively conducts training workshops and involved in teaching at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. His interests are related to the use of evidence in policy and programme​s, including estimates of burden of disease, estimating effectiveness of various interventions, development of research capacity and the strengthening of public health. View profile​​


Rehana A Salam is an Epidemiologist and a Biostatistician. She is currently a PhD Candidate in the Discipline of Pediatrics and Reproductive Health, Adelaide Medical School, University of Adelaide, Australia. She is also affiliated with the Aga Khan University as a lecturer. Her research interests include nutrition and infections during pregnancy, neonatal health and adolescent health. She has authored over 90 publications and has been a part of the review group for Lancet Series for ‘Childhood Diarrhea and Pneumonia’, ‘Every Newborn Series’ and ‘Maternal and Child Under nutrition’ series. View profile​



Mir Asghar Ali Khan Working as Director​, Research and Grants Administration and responsible for ensuring that all the research administration functions of the extramural and intramural research grants of the CoE WCH are appropriately managed. From pre-award to post-award including contract negotiations, regulatory affairs, compliance, audits, financial management, effort reporting, due diligence of proposals, and coordination with support departments of the University, the scope also expands to communicating and negotiating with international and national granting agencies. With a Master of Research Administration (MRA) from University of Central Florida and a Master of Business Administration from Pakistan, Mr Khan possesses over 11 years of proven experience of in research administration. 

Mr Khan's vision is to serve the ​developing world in the area of women and child health by advocating and promoting transparent, effective and timely research.