Babken Babajanian specialises in social protection and social policy. His research interests include the development of social protection systems, international and comparative dimensions of social policy, poverty reduction strategies, social exclusion, governance and accountability, and decentralisation and community-driven development.
Before joining ODI, he worked at the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Manila, where he was responsible for developing ADB’s action plan for social protection for Asia and the Pacific. He also managed regional technical assistance projects aimed at capacity building and knowledge sharing in social protection. He designed and managed a regional policy study on the role and impact of social pensions in Bangladesh, Nepal, Vietnam, and Thailand. Babken consulted extensively for the World Bank and the UK Department of International Development (DFID). In particular, he conducted research and analytical work on social dimensions of poverty reduction policies in Central Asia as well as a number of social impact and beneficiary assessments.
Babken lectured BSc and MSc courses in international social policy at the Department of Social Policy of the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) for 5 years. Whilst at LSE, he conducted research on the social and institutional outcomes of the social investment funds in Armenia and Kyrgyzstan as well as managed an ESRC funded comparative study on community-based welfare provision in the Caucasus and Central Asia. His research has led to a number of publications in academic journals, working papers and agency commissioned reports.