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The NUST-NBP Joint Research Project was a landmark project exhibiting the mandate of the CAC – industry-academia collaboration. The purpose of the project was to conduct an in-depth analysis of different important sectors of Pakistan’s economy in order to create an authentic and credible repository of sector data; and identify specific issues, strengths, growth potential and growth barriers of the sectors. This study was envisaged to provide a snapshot of different sectors from an investment point of view, and also provide input for policy-making relevant to the sectors and the overall economy. 

A group of 22 young, bright interns, from SEECS NUST, NBS NUST, Bahria University, and Quaid-e-Azam University joined us for the project. Their names and schools/Universities are given below:

1. Amna Meer, SEECS NUST 

2. Aisha Bibi, SEECS NUST 

3. Anum Raja NBS

4. Esha Iqbal ,NBS NUST 

5. Ahsan Ghazanfar, NBS NUST

6. Eamaan Saif NBS

7. Hassan Sarfraz , NBS NUST

8. Fatima Suleman, NBS NUST 

9. Walia Jamshan NBS

10. Qazi Abdul Jawad, NBS NUST 

11. Zainab Altaf, SEECS NUST

12. Numan Munawar Bajwa SEECS

13. Muhammad Umar Farooq, SEECS NUST 

14. Maleeha Asghar, NBS NUST

15. Madeeha Zahir Bukhari SEECS 

16. Sidrah Hameed, NBS NUST 

17. Rabia Raja, NBS NUST 

18. Qandeel Nawaz NBS

19. Rabia Tariq, Bahria University Islamabad. 

20. Syed Waqas Waheed, Bahria University Islamabad.

21. Sulaiman Jahangir, Bahria University Islamabad.

22. Kiran Sayed, Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad. 

Mr. Ahsan Elahi, Senior Vice President, Head of Industry Research and Analysis, Credit Management Group, National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) was the Industry Project Lead. Under his guidance the combined supervision of Mr. Elahi and the CAC management, the interns spent 8-10 weeks conducting secondary and then primary research to gather data according to a preset format. This involved a study of all published data on the sectors, most of which was not easy to assimilate due to unavailability of authentic published data, and thereafter a field interview phase in which the interns visited sample industries and interviewed their representatives to gather quantitative as well as qualitative data. 

A rigorous quality assurance of the data was carried out by CAC and then by NBP, after which a report titled INDUSTRY RATINGS & STRATEGIC POSITIONING 2012 was published, in January 2012. This was the first time that a bank and a university joined hands to conduct a study of this nature. The above-mentioned project recognized the role of academia in adding value to Industry, which is the CAC mandate. It gave students exposure to multiple industries in a short span of time; it was also a wonderful learning experience for both parties involved, and set the stage for Phase 2 of the project, a more refined effort to be conducted in 2013.