Established in 1995, the Social Policy and Development Centre (SPDC), a non-profit research think tank, has made a significant intellectual contribution in placing issues of pro-poor growth and social development on Pakistan's policy-making agenda. With a focus on issues of development, poverty, inequality, governance, social sector policies, climate, gender issues, and pro-poor macro-economic policy, it contributes to the national goal of social development through research, policy advice, and advocacy. The Centre was ranked by the University of Pennsylvania as the top research think tank of Pakistan and 22nd in Asia / Pacific for two consecutive years (2012 and 2013)
SPDC is non-partisan and relies on its independence and the quality of its research to make notable contributions to national policymaking. It also collaborates and cooperates with organizations working on issues relevant to its mandate both at home and abroad and is a partner with several national and international networks on social and economic issues. Determining its own agenda SPDC has successfully maintained a balance between responsive and proactive social sector research.
SPDC’s capability and capacity as a premier policy analysis institute is reflected by the nomination of its key staff members to more than 30 commissions, committees, task forces and other forums established by federal and provincial governments over the last two decades. Furthermore, it has worked on various aspects of poverty, inequality, and pro-poor growth that include definitional issues in estimating poverty line, other dynamics of poverty and inequality, poverty trends, poverty at sub-national levels, poverty and inequality nexus, social development and economic growth,social safety nets and regional inequalities. With some seven hundred plus publications to its credit SPDC provided technical assistance to the federal and provincial governments in the formulation of NFC Award of 1996, besides preparing studies/reports on provincial/ local finances and social service delivery. Moreover, in Pakistan, SPDC pioneered specialized training onGender Responsive Budgeting, whereas, internationally, technical assistance was provided to the Government of Eritrea in developing the capacity of the National Statistics and Evaluation Office, for developing the Living Standards Measurement Survey tools and Interim Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper.