Policy Challenges towards Rohingya Crisis in Bangladesh: The Role of National Development Experts
The Rohingya crisis constitutes one of the most significant humanitarian concerns of the current world. Nearly one million Rohingyas live in the congested camps in Cox’s Bazar, making it the largest displacement camp in a non-conflicting situation. The Government of Bangladesh and the international community are offering some much needed humanitarian support to this vulnerable group of people. However, the enormity and complex nature of the crisis have also created spaces for researchers, academics, and activists to get involved in the quest for a dignified and sustainable solution and/or to secure justice for the crimes against the Rohingyas. Based on 25 qualitative interviews with development professionals working on Rohingya issues, this paper explores to what extent the ‘experts’ (including the academics, researchers, and activists) can play a meaningful role in resolving this crisis. Our evidence suggests a nonchalant non-responsive practice limits the role of ‘experts’ towards finding a dignified solution to the crisis. Moreover, the space for national development experts (NDEs) is further confined than international experts. Our findings also reveal that the lack of evidence-based policy culture complicates the Rohingya crisis as locally derived expertise is often ignored in policy recommendations in finding a durable yet dignified solution to the Rohingya crisis.