My schooling took place in La Martiniere for Boys and St. Lawrence High School. After completing my graduation from Presidency College in 1989 with Honours in Economics, I enrolled in Calcutta University in the M.Sc. programme in Economics, where I secured Second position in the Merit list. Subsequently, I completed my Ph.D. from Calcutta University in 2003 in Environmental Economics.
I have been actively engaged in UG teaching (since 1994) and in PG teaching (since 1998). In the last ten years, I have offered courses in Econometrics (Theory and Laboratory), Microeconomics, Advanced Economic Theory, General Equilibrium, Health Economics & Policy, Macroeconomics and Environmental Economics.
I was also actively associated with the public policy domain, serving in the Prime Minister’s High Level Committee chaired by Justice Rajinder Sachar, and as a Member of the State Planning Board, West Bengal (2007-2011). In 2012, I prepared a background paper on Social Justice as part of NCAER’s exercise to draw up a long term plan (Kerala: Vision 2030) for Kerala. I have also prepared reports for Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, GoI, and Minority Welfare Department, West Bengal.
In research, my focus has been on applying econometric methods to areas like health, gender, education and ageing. The output from this research has been presented in conferences and workshops in Leeds University, UK; Winchester University, UK; Johannes Gutenberg University, Germany; Stockholm University, Sweden; Corvinus University, Hungrary; Xiamen University, China; Wageningen University, The Netherlands; Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok; etc. and published continuously in refereed and indexed international journals.
I am currently working, on (i) applications of GIS methods in context of Covid-19 (ii) impact of lockdown on dietary practices and welfare (funded by IGC) (iii) mental health of adults and youths during Covid-19; and (iv) maternal and child health (funded by IGC).
I am also part of a team comprising of faculty from Queen Mary University of London, AIIMS, London School of Tropical Medicine & Hygiene, and Cambridge University working on risk modelling in breast and ovarian cancer among South Asian women (SURAKSHA), for which we have received funding from Cancer Research UK (CRUK).
My doctoral students are working on intimate partner violence, union dissolution and human development.
- B.Sc. (Hons. in Economics) (First Class), Presidency College: 1989
- M.Sc. (First Class Second), Calcutta University: 1991
- Ph.D., Calcutta University: Title: Attitudes and institutions—Sustaining the commons: 2003
I am an alumnus of the Economics Department, Presidency College, graduating in 1989. Subsequently, I have completed my post graduate degree and PhD from Economics Department, Calcutta University in 1991 and 2003, respectively. I have also qualified UGC NET for JRF & Lectureship examination in 1992.
My teaching career started in 1994, with my appointment to West Bengal Education Service. Thereafter, I have served in Rabindra Bharati University, Institute of Development Studies Kolkata, Institute of Economic Growth New Delhi, and Indian Institute for Technology Kharagpur. I joined Presidency University on October 4, 2018.
In between, I was a Senior Consultant in the Prime Minister’s High Level Committee chaired by the late Mr. Justice Rajinder Sachar (2005-2006), and member of the West Bengal State Planning Board (2007-2011). In 2009, I was awarded a NUFFIC scholarship by the Netherlands government to visit Wageningen University to attend a workshop on Sustainable development. I also visited Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata for six months in 2012-13 as a Visiting Scientist.
Research / Administrative Experience+
My research interests are environment, health, gender and intra-household outcomes.
1. “Testing an app supported delivery system for Leprosy Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) services”, No Leprosy Remains India, No Leprosy Remains Netherlands, Public Health Foundation of India, Erasmus Medical Center (Netherlands) and State Leprosy Office, Health Department, Govt. of West Bengal and funded by Leprosy Research Initiative, Netherlands
2. Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi - An evaluation of rural households in Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal, funded by ICSSR
3. Pradhan Mantri Jan Aushudi Kendra: An evaluation, funded by ICSSR
4. Clean fuel and women's empowerment, self -funded collaborative study with Julia Yujung Lee (Colarado State University) and Mousumi Dutta (Presidency University)
- Principal Investigator in The International Growth Center, London School of Economics of GBP10,720/= for a study on Herself and her children, how worse are they? Impact of COVID-19 in rural Bihar. September 2020-February 2021.
- Co-Investigator in The International Growth Center, London School of Economics of GBP52,289/= for a study on Can peer and neighbourhood effects improve maternal health outcomes in rural Bihar? Assessing the role of formal and informal networks.
- Part of UK-India team led by Dr. S.V.S. Deo (AIIMS, New Delhi) & Dr. Usha Menon (UCL, UK) South Asian Breast Cancer Risk Prediction, Genetic testing and Health Management (SURAKSHA), Seed funding grant from Affordable Approaches to Cancer, UK, March-November, 2020.
- Social and biological determinants of educational attainments, joint study in three phases with Dr. Kausik Chaudhury, Leeds Business School, Leeds University, UK. Started in June 2019.
- Preference for information sharing and participation in decision-making for treatment among children and adolescents with cancer, and their parents (PRISM), joint study with Dr. Soumitra Sankar Dutta (Tata Medical Center), Dr. Sekhar Krishnan (TMC), Dr. Samiran Pande (Director, National AIDS Research Institute) & others
Teaching / Other Experience+
In the past few years, I have offered courses in Environmental Economics, Health Economics, Econometrics, Microeconomics, Macroeconomics and Social Choice.
Currently, I offer courses in Macroeconomics, Welfare Economics & Market Failures, Limited Dependent Variable models in the Even Semester, and Mathematical Ecoomics, Macroeconomics, Indian Economics and Impact Evaluation in the Odd Semester.
Post Graduate Supervision+
I am currently supervising doctoral students on the following topics:
- Union instability in India (jointly with Prof Mousumi Dutta, at Presidency University)
- Determinants and consequences of Human Development: A global level analysis (to beregistered)
In addition, the following students have completed their theses:
- Richa Kothari: "Silent bruisis: Determinants and consequences of intimate partner violence in India" (Presidency University), Awarded in 2023.
- Pallabi Das: "Age of marriage and contraception choice: Essays on the role of linguistic identity” (jointly with Dr. I.S. Yadav, at IIT Kharagpur). Awarded in 2021.
- Mahananda Kanjilal (Ph.D. awarded in 2011) “Municipal Services and Finances: A Study of Urban Local Bodies in West Bengal”, Netaji Subhash Open University.
- Dona Ghosh (Ph.D. awarded in 2018) “Gender disparities in health status of aged in India”, HSS Department, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur.
- Antara Dhar (Ph.D. awarded in 2019) “Nature of workforce participation among elderly in India: Important determinants”, Economics Department, University of Calcutta (Supervisor: Dr. M. Dutta). Joint Supervisor.
- Chandan Naskar (M.Phil. awarded in 2010) “Economic Growth and Environmental Responsiveness: A Cross Country Investigation”, Centre for Social Science and Humanities, Calcutta University.
Life Member: The Indian Econometrics Society, Indian Health Economics & Policy Association, Indian Society for Ecological Economics.
Annual Member: European Population Association, International Union for the Scientific Study of Population, Asian Population Association.
1. Lee, Julia Yujung; Husain, Z. & Dutta, M. (2023) “Does improved cooking fuel empower women? Evidence from India”, Sustainable Development. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/sd.2695. IF: 12.50.
2. Z. Husain & P. Das (2023) “Reducing child diarrhoea in India: Shifting policy focus from source of water to quality”, Water Resource and Economics, 42: 100221. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wre.2023.100221. IF: 2.848.
3. Z. Husain, S.S. Datta, S. Ghosh & M. Dutta (2023) Changes in mental health status during the COVID-19 pandemic: a longitudinal study of residents of Indian metropolitan cities, Journal of Mental Health, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/09638237.2023.2182417. IF: 3.681.
4. Z. Husain, S. Ghosh & M. Dutta (2022) Changes in dietary practices of mother and child during the COVID-19 lockdown: Results from a household survey in Bihar, India, Food Policy. 112(October). DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodpol.2022.102372. IF: 6.08.
5. R. Kothari, Z. Husain & M. Dutta (2022) Understanding the Geography of Victimization: A Spatial Analysis of Intimate Partner Violence in India. Journal of Interpersonal Violence. 38(5-6): 4970-4997. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/08862605221120898. IF: 2.621.
6. R. Manchanda, Z. Husain et al. (2020) “Economic Evaluation of Population-Based BRCA1/BRCA2 Mutation Testing across Multiple Countries and Health Systems”, Cancers, 12(7): 1929. https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers12071929. Won Best Paper Award for 2020. IF: 6.575.
7. M. Dutta & Z. Husain (2009) “An Application of MCDM to Built Heritage: The Case of Calcutta”, Journal of Cultural Heritage, 2009, X(2): 237-243. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.culher.2008.09.007 IF: 3.229.
8. Z. Husain (2009) “Commons and Commoners: Re-examining Community in Common Pool Resources”, Sustainable Development, 17(2): 142-154. IF: 8.562. https://doi.org/10.1002/sd.371 IF: 8.562.
9. M. Dutta, Sarmila Banerjee & Z. Husain (2007) “Untapped Demand for Heritage Tourism: A CVM Study of Prinsep Ghat, Calcutta”, Tourism Management, 28(1): 83-95. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2005.07.021 IF: 12.879.
10. Z. Husain & R.N. Bhattacharya (2004) “Contextual Factors and Common Pool Resources: Evolution of a Fishermen’s Co-operative in Calcutta”, Ecological Economics, 50(3-4): 201-217. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolecon.2004.03.027 IF: 6.536.
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