St Edmund’s College
Atiyab Sultan is working towards an MPhil in Economics at St Edmund’s College. Previously, she completed an undergraduate degree, majoring in Economics at the Lahore University of Management Sciences in Pakistan. She also completed a minor in the social sciences, focusing on political science and philosophy. Her final year thesis involved empirical research and a quantitative analysis of the labour market outcomes of graduates from her university, with an aim to disentangling the effects of the quality of secondary education and family background. She also completed an independent study on orientalism, writing a paper contrasting the depictions of Che Guevara in western media before and after his death. Having completed her undergraduate degree a semester early, she worked as a research associate at the business school at her university. Simultaneously, she wrote a paper on the indigenous system of education in pre-colonial Punjab and the pernicious effect of British colonisation on the same.
While her dissertation for the MPhil in Economics lies in the territory of quantitative analysis, she hopes to pursue her interest in history while at the Centre by looking at the impoverishment of Punjab following annexation by the British in the 19th century. The primary focus of this research is to discern societal and institutional changes that have proven to be endemic and help to explain the mass poverty in the region today. She does not intend the project to be a British-bashing harangue, at once romanticizing pre-colonial times and absolving post-colonial actors, but hopes to take a closer look at dynamic processes engendering poverty in the region and the colonial roots these may possess.