Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET)

Sadia Afroj

Assistant Professor

Disaster Management and Transportation Planning

Academic Biography

Sadia Afroj currently works at the Department of Urban & Regional Planning, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET). She does her research in transportation planning and travel behavior. Moreover, she has experience in the research field of disaster management and climate change related issues.

Educational Information
  • Master of Urban and Regional Planning (MURP), Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET), 2022
  • Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning (BURP), Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET), 2018

  • Training Coordinator and Resource Person, Training on Geographic Information System (GIS) and AutoCAD organized by Department of Urban and Regional Planning, BUET in collaboration with Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC).
  • Training Coordinator, Training on Interactions between Land Use and Transportation organized by Department of Urban and Regional Planning, BUET in collaboration with Dhaka Transport Coordination Authority (DTCA).
  • Member, Consulting Team for Preparation of Terms of Reference for Upazila Master Plan project under URMIDP of Local Government Engineering Department (LGED), GoB.
  • Member, Consulting Team for Earthquake risk assessment for developing contingency plans, training modules and awareness materials for Rangpur City Corporation and Tangail/Rangamati and Sunamganj Pourashavas under NRP of MoDMR.

Research Interests
  • Behavioral Analysis
  • Climate Change and Disaster Management
  • Transportation Planning
  • Emerging Issues in Planning

All Publications
Sadia Afroj, Md. Musleh Uddin Hasan, Nafis Fuad
The Who, When and Why of Uber Trips in Dhaka: A Study from Users’ Perspective
Springer, Transportation in Developing Economies, 2022
Publication Type: Journal Article
, Publication Link
Growing travel demand and technological development provoke to enhance the share of ridehailing services within urban transportation sector in the developing countries. To keep pace with this flow, Uber service has been launched in Dhaka, Bangladesh and is getting popular to city dwellers. Despite this, very little information is available regarding the user groups, their trip characteristics and service quality of ridehailing in the context of developing countries. In addition to this, effects of such service on other modes and users’ view about service are at unexplored state which is important to ensure a sustainable and equitable transport system. This study intends to investigate these issues where questionnaire survey through face-to-face interview has been conducted among the Uber users of Dhaka using simple random sampling technique. The data are analyzed engaging descriptive statistics and statistical modeling. Results show that Uber is used by comparatively wealthy younger social groups despite they claim to pay more than other alternative modes even than the specified fare by Uber that put forward the issue of equity. In accordance with user’s opinion, better accessibility, safety, comfort and existence of emergency situation influence their decision to choose Uber instead other modes like CNG, taxi services etc. Uber users of Dhaka mainly share trips with their acquaintance ones. Moreover most of the users claim the facilities on Uber car and GPS system of app need to be developed for enhancing the service quality that may further assist the decision making of integrated sustainable transport system.
Niaz Mahmud Zafri, Sadia Afroj, Imtiaz Mahmud Nafi, Md. Musleh Uddin Hasan
A content analysis of newspaper coverage of COVID-19 pandemic for developing a pandemic management framework
Elsevier, Heliyon, 2021
Publication Type: Journal Article
, Publication Link
Background: The emergence of COVID-19 pandemic has not only shaken the global health sector, but also almost every other sector, including economic and education sectors. Newspapers are performing a significant role by featuring the news of COVID-19 from its very onset. The temporal fluctuation of COVID-19 related key themes presented in newspaper articles and the findings obtained from them could offer an effective lesson in dealing with future epidemics and pandemics. Aim and method: This paper intends to develop a pandemic management framework through an automated content analysis of local newspaper coverage of COVID-19 pandemic in Bangladesh. To fulfill the aim, 7,209 newspaper articles are assembled and analyzed from three popular local newspapers named “”, “New Age”, and “Prothom Alo English” over the period from January 1, 2020 to October 31, 2020. Results: Twelve key topics are identified: origin and outbreak of COVID-19, response of healthcare system, impact on economy, impact on lifestyle, government assistance to the crisis, regular updates, expert opinions, pharmaceutical measures, non-pharmaceutical measures, updates on vaccines, testing facilities, and local unusual activities within the system. Based on the identified topics, their timeline of discussion, and information flow in each topic, a four-stage pandemic management framework is developed for epidemic and pandemic management in future. The stages are preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation. Conclusion: This research would provide insights into stage-wise response to any biological hazard and contribute ideas to endure future outbreaks.
Niaz Mahmud Zafri, Sadia Afroj, Mohammad Ashraf Ali, Md. Musleh Uddin Hasan, Md. Hamidur Rahman
Effectiveness of containment strategies and local cognition to control vehicular traffic volume in Dhaka, Bangladesh during COVID-19 pandemic: Use of Google Map based real-time traffic data
PLOS, PLoS ONE, 2021
Publication Type: Journal Article
, Publication Link
Background To prevent the viral transmission from higher infected to lower infected area, controlling the vehicular traffic, consequently public movement on roads is crucial. Containment strategies and local cognition regarding pandemic might be helpful to control vehicular movement. This study aimed to ascertain the effectiveness of containment strategies and local cognition for controlling traffic volume during COVID-19 pandemic in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Method Six containment strategies were considered to explore their influence on traffic condition, including declaration of general holiday, closure of educational institution, deployment of force, restriction on religious gathering, closure of commercial activities, and closure of garments factories. Newspaper coverage and public concern about COVID-19 were considered as local cognition in this research. The month of Ramadan as a potential event was also taken into account considering it might have an impact on the overall situation. Average daily journey speed (ADJS) was calculated from real-time traffic data of Google Map to understand the vehicular traffic scenario of Dhaka. A multiple linear regression method was developed to comprehend the findings. Results The results showed that among the containment strategies, declaration of general holiday and closure of educational institutions could increase the ADJS significantly, thereby referring to less traffic movement. Besides, local cognition could not significantly affect the traffic condition, although the month of Ramadan could increase the ADJS significantly. Conclusion It is expected that these findings would provide new insights into decision-making and help to take appropriate strategies to tackle the future pandemic situation.
Sadia Afroj, Fahmida Hanif, Muntasir Bin Hossain, Nafis Fuad, Ishrat Islam, Nusrat Sharmin, Fariba Siddiqa
Assessing the municipal service quality of residential neighborhoods based on SERVQUAL, AHP and Citizen’s Score Card: A case study of Dhaka North City Corporation area, Bangladesh
Elsevier, Journal of Urban Management, 2021
Publication Type: Journal Article
, Publication Link
Rapid urban population growth stimulates the challenges of city government authorities in providing the municipal services adequately considering the citizen’s demand. While the gap persists between the service provision and citizen’s perception on it, the quality of life of cities may deteriorate due to psychological dissatisfaction of dwellers with urban services. Hence the evaluation of the urban service quality from the citizen’s perspective and accordingly addressing the gap is necessary for sustainable urban management. This study shows a common framework incorporating SERVQUAL, Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) and Citizen’s Score Card to define the quality of municipal services spatially and functionally based on the satisfaction of citizens. The items under the dimensions of SERVQUAL and the weightages of each dimension were set through literature review and expert opinion. Dhaka, the only megacity of Bangladesh is experiencing an impetuous growth towards its northern portion and Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) is the responsible authority to supply the municipal facilities within this area. Nine residential neighborhoods having homogeneous characteristics in terms of population density, residential land use, built up area and income level within the jurisdictional area of DNCC were selected to collect the data. The data were collected through household questionnaire survey using stratified random sampling technique where people responded for each SERVQUAL questions and scored the facilities provided by the DNCC. The result shows citizens are moderately satisfied (63.3%) with municipal services aggregately. To meet the demand of dwellers, the city government authority should be more functional, reliable and participatory and be equipped with qualified manpower and facilities. Despite the locational characteristics are uniform among the case areas, Ward 3, Ward 4 and Ward 31 are in unprivileged state in terms of municipal services. The facilities of public toilet, parking and disaster management activities performed by DNCC are commonly in unsatisfactory state in all areas that require special attention from the authority. Based on the findings, it could be stated that where the city government authority is roughly unsusceptible to meet the demand of the existing population, the enormous population growth within urban areas could affect the life quality poorly. Therefore this paper would fetch a course where the deficiency on urban services would be evaluated under a common arena considering the psychological aspect of citizen, thereby priority interventions could be ascertained for enhancing the life quality of urban areas.
Sadia Afroj, Shakil Akther, Ishrat Islam
Consideration of Climate Change Issues in Different Infrastructure Projects of Bangladesh: Using a Qualitative Approach
-, International Conference on “Climate Change Adaptation: Evidences from Best-Practice in Coastal Areas, 2020
Publication Type: Conference Paper
, Publication Link
Paromita Shome, Sadia Afroj
Local Level Multi-hazard Mapping for Natural and Manmade Hazards: A Case Study of Chittagong Division
HBR, Journal of Environmental Engineering and its Scope, 2019
Publication Type: Journal Article
, Publication Link
Hazards like cyclone, storm surge, flood, drought, landslide, building collapse, fire etc. recurrently occur in Bangladesh due to its locational disadvantages and public ignorance regarding impacts of hazards. In this study, multi hazard assessment has been conducted and based on this result multi hazard zones have been delineated for Chittagong division of Bangladesh in case of 2013. Here the Chittagong division was selected as study area due to its geographical vulnerable location and witnessing situation at different hazards. The year 2013 has been considered as the study period because of occurrence of recurrent and various types of hazards at Chittagong division in a single period according to data. Assessment and zoning has been conducted separately both for natural and manmade hazards because of their different characteristics. Historically, Chittagong division is attacked by different hazards like cyclone, flood, landslides, fire etc. almost in every year. It has been observed from the study that Chittagong district is the most susceptible district because of multiple types of hazards. This district is vulnerable for both natural and manmade hazards. Noakhali district is also in a vulnerable state in case of natural hazards. Specific policies for specific locations may improve the scenario. This kind of hazard assessment should be incorporated in local level planning in order to develop community resilience and adaptation.
Sadia Afroj, Nafis Fuad, Md. Musleh Uddin Hasan, Mr Anindya Kishore Debnath
Sustainability of Carsharing Service in Dhaka: A Case Study on Uber Users
N/A, International Conference on Sustainability in Natural and Built Environment (iCSNBE2019), 2019
Publication Type: Conference Paper
, Publication Link
Sustainability of transport system depends on a range of services and impacts produced by transport which can be indicated by several factors like mode choice, affordability, equity, accessibility, pollution, safety and efficiency. To address the increasing congestion problem and demand of mobility carsharing service was introduced in urban areas through focusing sustainability. Uber is a ridesharing service catered for an easy, comfortable, and convenient urban travel experience. It was launched in Dhaka in 2016. As a new alternative mode is available to the city dwellers, many of them are using it. The study intended to identify the Uber users as well as to understand their use pattern and preferences from sustainability perspective. For this study data were collected through in person questionnaire survey of Uber users at several potential points of users by random sampling method. The study has used descriptive approaches to investigate the issues. Results show that Uber is mostly used by the people of middle to high income younger age group due to its better accessibility and safety. Due to higher fare structure low to middle income people can not avail this service which is a negative point for Uber as far as sustainability is concerned. Uber trips are found most likely to be shifted from CNG and Taxi. Uber has no impact to change private car ownership status and car use. In some cases Uber has diverted trips from non-motorized modes. It is clear from the observation of this study that Uber is providing service to a particular segment of the population with less sustainability concern of urban transport in Dhaka.
Fahmida Hanif, Sadia Afroj, Nafis Fuad
A Study on Revitalizing Parks and Playgrounds in Dhaka
Department of Urban and Regional Planning, BUET, Nagar Shoilee, 2017
Publication Type: Journal Article
, Publication Link
Sadia Afroj, Nafis Fuad, Fahmida Sumi
A Comparative Study of Freight Transportation Sub-system through Dhaka- Chittagong Corridor
Department of Urban and Regional Planning, BUET, Nagar Shoilee, 2017
Publication Type: Journal Article
, Publication Link
Transport system provides one of the basic infrastructures and acts as a prerequisite for socioeconomic development of a country. To ensure a cost-effective, environment friendly and safe freight transport, choosing the best mode of transport is necessary. Dhaka and Chittagong are the two major metropolitan cities of Bangladesh. Dhaka is the main commercial center and administrative capital of the country. Chittagong is the primary sea port, accounting for about 90%of imports and exports. Dhaka and Chittagong are linked by roads, inland waterways, air and railway to provide various transport options. But air transport is more expensive compared to surface transport. Road and railway links handle most of the container cargo traffic in this corridor, though both of these modes of transport have serious capacity constraints. Inland water transport system has also some problems due to port facilities, lack of storage capacity and many others. This study is conducted to compare efficiency and cost for freight surface transport along Dhaka-Chittagong corridor which can be helpful to choose feasible way of freight transport on this corridor.