The Academy of Work (AoW)

The Academy of Work (AoW) offers a policy-oriented long-term and sustainable education programme in the field of International Relations and Social Partnership for trade unionists from the low-end manufacturing industries. The AoW is open for active and talented mid-level members of trade unions, who have completed a formal education and who have already gained some experiences in trade union work and could imagine a professional career in the trade union movement as permanent staff of sectoral or national union federations or other organisations affiliated with the labour movement in Bangladesh. The successful completion of the course will qualify the participants for a competent and all-inclusive representation of workers' interests.

The AoW is limited each year to approximately 20 participants from the middle management/leadership of registered factory unions, employees of the sectoral national federations or national union centres. Participants can thus either be volunteers coming from basic unions or full-time workers from federations or centres. The participants are selected from various sectors but there is a focus on trade union organisations from manufacturing industries, including the RMG sector. Thereby, the composition of participants will contribute to overcome the fragmented trade union landscape. The participants should be able to take over more responsibilities after completing the course ideally leading to a more professional labour movement in Bangladesh.


AoW's target group are thus:


• Active and talented mid-trade unionist from the low-end manufacturing industries (basic unions, federations, union centres)

• Outstanding participants of on-going workers' education programme

• Age group below 45 years with completion of formal education


BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD), BRAC University is a resource centre for promoting research and creating knowledge in areas of governance, economic growth, political economy, urbanisation, gender issues and sustainable development.

The certificates/diplomas, which the participants shall receive upon the successful completion of the academic programme of the AoW will carry the logo/emblem of BIGD/BRAC University, FES and BILS.


BIGD has developed a curriculum for the AoW on the Module: Economics, Module: Field of Management & Organisation and the Course: Gender, Trade Unions and Decent Work.