The Institute of Statistical Research and Training (ISRT), University of Dhaka, is the leading institution for training and research in Applied Statistics in Bangladesh. It was founded in 1964 by the Late National Professor Dr. Qazi Motahar Husain, an eminent scientist, academician and a leading proponent of the statistical sciences in this country. Dr. Husain was the founder Director and the current Director is Professor Dr. M. Shafiqur Rahman. The Institute offers a 4-year B.S. (Honors) program that has been designed to produce graduates with strong statistical computing skills, sound knowledge of statistical concepts and the versatility to apply these concepts in areas as diverse as medicine, engineering, economics and the social sciences. The 1-year M.S. program consists of specialized courses in areas ranging from environmental statistics to clinical trials and meta analysis and has been designed for students with a keen interest in higher studies and research. In addition, the Institute offers Ph.D. and M.Phil. degree programs.
ISRT boasts an academic environment that is highly competitive and conducive to research. Both students and faculty members benefit from the regular seminars and talks given by researchers from home and abroad on topics of current interest. The Institute has a rich library with well over 15,000 books and is equipped with three state-of-the-art computer labs and high-speed internet access for graduate and undergraduate students. The aim is to provide a learning environment that stimulates intellectual curiosity, critical thinking and independent problem-solving skills. The Journal of Statistical Research (JSR), which is an international journal that has been published bi-annually by ISRT since 1970, serves as a forum for the exchange of research ideas between statisticians in Bangladesh and abroad. Faculty members conduct research in diverse areas such as biostatistics, spatial statistics, statistical pattern recognition, Bayesian analysis and econometrics and regularly publish in peer-reviewed journals.
Among its other activities, the Institute frequently organizes short courses and training programs for non-statisticians in government and non-government organizations who find themselves using statistics in their work. In doing so, it has played an active role in promoting and creating awareness about the need for sound statistical practices among people from other disciplines so that they may work more efficiently within their organizations. ISRT also maintains close ties with the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics and other organizations responsible for the collection and dissemination of statistical data in Bangladesh and is frequently called upon to offer its expertise on statistical issues of national interest.
Every year, students as well as faculty members from the Institute receive awards from the Faculty of Science, University of Dhaka in recognition of their high academic achievements and research excellence. Over the years the Institute has played a significant role in the country’s development by producing world class statisticians for academia and industry in addition to providing statistical expertise on issues of national interest. ISRT is proud of its graduates who have enjoyed successful careers in academia, industry, and government organizations both at home and abroad. ISRT organized its first ever reunion on 22 August, 2014 and first ever International Conference on Applied Statistics (ICAS2014) on 27-29 December, 2014. Both events organized to mark the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Institute. ISRT and ISRT alumni association jointly organized first alumni reunion on 27 January, 2018.