Dr. Bilal Mirza

Affiliated researcher

Research group(s):
1. Economics of Knowledge and Innovation
1. Economics of Knowledge and Innovation
1. Economics of Knowledge and Innovation

Bilal Mirza joined the Innovation & Development Studies cohort in 2006 as PhD Researcher and successfully defended his PhD Thesis entitled "Energy poverty and rural energy markets in developing countries" on 14 December 2012, under the supervision of Prof. Adam Sizrmai and Prof. Rene Kemp. As a UNU-MERIT scholar, Bilal computed the first ever Energy Poverty Index (EPI), using the energy inconveniences and energy shortfalls that incur in rural households that has been widely cited across research publications in related to energy poverty measurements. His doctoral research also focused on the role of innovation in poverty alleviation, particularly energy poverty.  

Bilal has extensively presented his research work at different forums in Netherlands, United Kingdom, Sweden, Switzerland, Canada, Malaysia, Thailand, Turkey and Pakistan. Apart from that, he has also been involved in trainings at the UNU office in the Netherlands, particularly the Design and Evaluation of Innovation Policy (DEIP) in developing countries and played instrumental role in organizing the web-based training at Pakistan Council for Science and Technology (PCST), Pakistan.  From July 2011 till June 2012, he has worked as Research Associate at Ghulam Ishaq Khan (GIK) Institute of Engineering Sciences and Technology - a prestigious engineering university in Pakistan where he was involved in teaching, research and training. Bilal has been involved in trainings of policy makers and researchers at the OIC (Organization for Islamic Cooperation) Standing Committee on Scientific and Technological Cooperation (COMSTECH), Pakistan Council of Science and Technology (PCST), Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA), Pakistan, and National Rural Support Program (NRSP, Pakistan).

Earlier, Bilal has also participated at numerous international training and conference events across Europe and Canada. In June 2011, Bilal presented his research on mutual effects of energy poverty and household income at the Canadian Economic Association conference, held at Ottawa University. Later, Bilal was invited as a speaker at the International Development Research Centre (IDRC, Ottawa) for insights on policy implications of his research on energy poverty. Furthermore, Bilal was also selected as a participant at Örebro University (Sweden) to present his research at European Development Research Network (EDRN) workshop.   

Bilal is also recipient of several grants, including United Nations University scholarship for his PhD studies, UNU fieldwork support, Higher Education Commission (HEC) grant as a researcher, and UNU grant for innovation policy training, among others.  Bilal took his Masters (M.S.) degree in Management of Technology (Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management) from Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL/ETHL), Switzerland in 2004 and MBA from University Institute of Management Sciences (UIMS-UAAR) in Rawalpindi, Pakistan in 2001.

During the last three years, Bilal was part of the UCP Business School at University of Central Punjab, Lahore as Head of Division, Entrepreneurship and Innovation as well as the (Founding) Director, Office of Research, Innovation and Commercialization (ORIC). Bilal played an active role in extensive overhauling of business school curriculum with much needed focus on entrepreneurship and venture creation. During his stay at UCP, he was also part of planning and strategizing the Takhleeq - UCP first Business Incubation Centre, with an approximately Rs. 30 million budget where more than 10 startups were hosted. Apart from his academic ambitions, Dr. Bilal is also the Chief Executive Officer, Startup Academy (Pvt.) Limited, that is a entrepreneurship capacity building and research institute working in Pakistan.

Presently, Bilal Mirza is based in Islamabad and is the Head of Department, Business Administration at Iqra University, Islamabad Campus. Dr. Bilal is also UNESCO Certified Innovation Policy expert, focusing on Pakistan's innovation landscape.