Information and Communication Technology has revolutionized the globe with its far-reaching implications in every sector. It can provide a unique opportunity to strategically address the sustainability goals and ensure a sustainable, healthy and equitable future. Sarah Faraz foresees the utility of ICT in not only achieving the SDGs but also raising the standards of living for women in Pakistan. She also discusses the benefits that will be secured by the application of ICT in solving water, sanitation and energy problems, and using the digital space for telemedicine and remote education.
Human development is one of the most vital measures of a country’s progress, but successive governments have failed to improve human development standards in Pakistan. Ariba Khan Waheed and Salah ud din Yousaf examine the contemporary human development disparities in Pakistan, both between provinces and within provinces. They also identify the factors that contribute to the glaring disparities in human development.
In its quest to contain the Chinese influence by supporting India, the US has compelled Pakistan to seek an alliance with Russia and China. Huda Raza and Sher Ali Shahid analyze the Indo-US strategic partnership, particularly in the realm of nuclear technology, and its impact on the balance of power in South Asia. The authors note that the India-US nuclear deal represents a shift in the US foreign policy from Pakistan to India. Although the two parties claim that the deal is for peaceful purposes, it poses a threat to the stability of South Asia and elevates Pakistan’s security dilemma.
Women’s rights, which are a key facet of Islam, are increasingly being viewed through a more ‘secular’ lens in Pakistan. The tension that now exists around this cause has caused multiple riots in the name of protecting ‘nationalist’ values. Mareeha Ahmad uses a qualitative approach and proposes the idea of using Islamic frameworks to help the progression of women’s rights in Pakistan.
Kanz-ul-eman differentiates between hate speech and free speech. She explains how hate speech has thrived under the umbrella of freedom of speech and become widespread in Pakistan and the rest of the world. Various forms of media are being used to disseminate hate speech to incite violence against different groups. The author notes that terrorist groups, in particular, have taken a liking to social media platforms to spread harmful messages and for recruitment purposes.
In order to address the ongoing surge of plastic waste generation, Haya Sultan created an online questionnaire on the SurveyGizmo app and analyzed the results on the SPSS software to understand the attitude of the public towards plastic pollution. The purpose of this study was to assess the per capita estimation of plastic wastes generated at the domestic level during the Covid-19 period. Sustainable practices and a principle model are needed to mitigate this worldwide problem because it has a significant impact on solid waste management.
Water scarcity has become one of the most pressing matters in Pakistan. In 1990, Pakistan reached the water stress line and today, only 23% of its urban population and 14% of its rural population has access to safe drinking water. The author, Kashaf Imran, notes that on top of several other contributing factors, the mismanagement of water resources has prevented Pakistan from properly tackling its water crisis.
Using a general thematic approach, this paper examines the positive and negative externalities of the COVID-19 pandemic on Pakistan’s economy. The author, Umme Ammara, explores the different cases of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) from China, India, Bangladesh and Kazakhstan to understand the different measures the Pakistani government can initiate to strengthen SMEs. The findings suggest that unleashing the potential of the SME sector requires the need for institutional change in a country intending to build a human economy where human development is the main area of concern.
Balochistan’s geostrategic location has captured the attention of all the neighboring countries. Not only has its rich resource abundance and strategic location interested China but Pakistan’s adversaries like US and India have also been actively participating in causing insurgencies in Balochistan to hamper its development. Along with the multifaceted role of the international actors, the indigenous nationalist movements within Balochistan and their increasing relationship with similar ethnicities across the border have also caused serious consequences for Pakistan. The author, Iman Mujahid, highlights how Balochistan has been a symbol of global political exploitation by international actors and how their attempt to intervene in the region has contributed to the existing ball game.
Pakistan is striving to develop maritime tourism to broadcast its image as a tourist-friendly country and to prosper economically. The authors, Akseer Ali Saif Janjua, Sarah Kiyani, Saliha Waseem, and Saqib Ameen, explore the country’s tourism potential, and the development carried out in the sector by comparing it to the Republic of Maldives—a country which was once considered unsuitable for tourism but is now one of the world’s top tourist destinations.
The Covid-19 pandemic revealed the inadequacy of the health infrastructure in Pakistan. In Pakistan’s case, after the 18th amendment, provinces were given the right to devise health policies. The public sector is inadequately staffed and has below-average job satisfaction and work environment. The authors discuss Pakistan’s National Health Vision (2016-2025) and compare it with Bangladesh’s health policies.
The author, Ali Hassan, underscores how Pakistan has treated its religious minorities over the years. He explores the reasons for minority injustice and the steps that have been taken to fill this lacuna. He finally concludes that unless existing social and legal structures are challenged, minorities in Pakistan will never be equal to Muslim majority citizens.
The onset of the geopolitics of energy and resources in the international political system has redefined the regions’ importance in terms of the reservoirs of resources. Central Asia, in this respect, stands out with its abundant, unexplored, and top-notch natural resources. The paper highlights the factors behind the arousing interests of Pakistan, China, and the United States in the Central Asian republics. The future of Central Asia’s political, economic, and geostrategic landscape shall be determined by the member countries’ course of policies and actions towards Pakistan, China, and the United States.
Judicial activism can be defined as the exercise of legislative and judicial functions by the judicial branch, thereby compromising the doctrine of the separation of powers. One thing is for certain: judicial activism has not gone unnoticed by the people of Pakistan. Judicial activism in its very nature is pervasive and inequitable. The author, Asfand Yar Katchela, presents a compelling argument for restraining judicial activism by giving reference to significant case laws and the findings of his own survey.
The Cambridge Analytica scandal, the disclosure of the Pegasus spyware, and the hacking of Pakistan’s Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) have made the vulnerable nature of cyberspace abundantly clear. The author, Taaha Rauf, notes that Pakistan’s decision to use electronic voting machines (EVMs), in the 2023 general elections, comes with the ever-increasing threat of cyber attacks. He explains that since the US, Australia, and Canada, already employ technology for several purposes in their elections, they have undertaken measures to ensure their cybersecurity and election integrity. For Pakistan to do the same, he makes certain recommendations.