Philosophy about the Doctor of Philosophy

Earning a doctoral degree is not just writing a few chapters and specializing in one research topic. By definition, it is more comprehensive, more imaginative than what we may think! Today, I am sharing my motivations, my understanding, and my desire to be an …

Go to the profile of Mazbahul G. Ahamad
Oct 30, 2019
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  • I often think … why do I research?
  • Is it because I am a researcher, or is it to search for evidence, or new policy alternatives?
  • Or, do I just want to be a contemporary analyst? Or, a polymath, or a pseudointellectual?
  • It’s not something like that. … certainly, a bit unorthodox!
  • To me, research is a way to understand people … a way to relate to people … and their behaviors around the world.
  • Because, I know … happiness—what we need most—is the impact of research.
  • My “… heart knows the way.” — J. Rumi.
  • That’s why I am not just following the evidence.
  • Perhaps (?) I am a comparative thinker by practice … or have an ‘Otaku’ mind with cosmopolitan taste, ceteris paribus.
  • … “the thinker without a paradox is like a lover without feeling: a paltry mediocrity.” — S. Kierkegaard.
  • I, therefore, prefer exploring historical analogies, circumstantial evidence, and, most importantly, using my educated intuition to analyze (paradoxical) research questions … and to advance ideas.
  • I was born and grew up in the central region—a folk cultural and artisan hub—of Bangladesh surrounded by naturally smart and open-minded people.
  • Homegrown experiences always pushed me to broaden my research perspectives with blended thoughts.
  • Also, Bengali thinkers are predominantly influenced by the crisis in the political economy of underdevelopment.
  • Likewise, ideas and institutions in comparative political economy interest me and intrinsically motivate my everyday arguments.
  • Needless to say, unique homegrown strategies are likely to complement my research approach in meaningful ways, like food and fashion.
  • And, research shows me the ways to understand evidence … linking priorities … from all perspectives.
  • In the present, we face the same problems as in past days … with different names and views … continuously and considerably so!
  • Therefore, I want to start again … so that I can spend my time … understanding the ‘comparatives’ … exploring the ‘fair enough’ … sharing ‘experiences’ … and helping ‘people’ through simple … localized approaches.
  • After all, I am a researcher by training and trade … and because I do research.
  • The same old questions, but blended East–West … old school–new school thoughts, discussions … arguments … and mixed(!) understanding … and a few educated guesses.
  • The stories of Tanzanian pastoralists … are the past and present stories of us all.
  • And, this is what my dissertation is about!

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons. Disclaimer: All opinions are my own.

Go to the profile of Mazbahul G. Ahamad

Mazbahul G. Ahamad

Ph.D. Candidate, University of Nebraska–Lincoln

https://sites.google.com/site/mazbahulgahamad/

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