Aida Bazara is the first student who has earned a master’s degree in International Development and Gender with a degree of ‘Very Good’ from the Gender Development Research and Studies Center (GDRSC) at Sana’a University on March the 10th 2018. Her MA thesis was on the ‘The Role of Corporate Social Responsibility in Yemeni Multinational Companies: a Tool for Community Development’.
The research brought insights about the relation between CSR and community development in a poor country like Yemen, and what constitute their features and drivers by taking two multinational corporations operating in Yemen as a case study. The thesis also discussed different approaches of integrating CSR in community development by going beyond the prevalent paradigm of CSR in poor countries.
The study supports the claim that companies who are shifting away from philanthropy towards more development-focused strategic CSR initiatives can contribute better to the well-being of their immediate community. The research prevails limits of CSR practices in Yemen in term of embracing broader perspective of sustainable development, being accountable for their social and environmental impact, and integrating wider aspects of CSR.
The CSR aiming at improving local communities should ensure sustainability, capacity building and partnership with NGOs. CSR performs in underdeveloped economics and limited resources, should seek broader avenues to contribute to the community.
It is noteworthy, that the Master’s Program in International Development and Gender (launched in April 2011) is the first program of this kind at the level of Sana’a University and Yemen’s universities in this field and the first program at the regional level which focuses on development studies from gender perspectives.