Aga Khan Development Network. AKES is a part of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN), a group of private, international, non-denominational agencies working to improve living conditions and opportunities for people in the developing world. The Network’s organisations have varying individual mandates ranging from health and education to architecture, rural development and the promotion of private-sector enterprise.
The AKDN was founded by His Highness the Aga Khan, the 49th hereditary Imam of Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims. For the Aga Khan, one manifestation of his hereditary responsibilities as spiritual leader of the Ismaili Muslim community has been a deep and renowned engagement with education and international development.
Together the AKDN agencies work towards a common goal – to build institutions and programmes that can respond to the challenges of social, economic and cultural change.
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AKDN agencies work towards the elimination of global poverty; the promotion and implementation of pluralism; the advancement of the status of women; and the honouring of Islamic art and architecture.
The following is a list of AKDN agencies:
Collectively they are leading development organisations around the world, focusing on the improving the livelihoods of Ismailis. The Aga Khan’s secular development institutions – such as AKDN and AKRSP – provide services and direction for sustainable development around the world.
The Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development with its affiliates, Tourism Promotion Services, Industrial Promotion Services, and the Aga Khan Agency for Microfinance, seek to strengthen the role of the private sector in developing countries by supporting private sector initiatives in the development process. The fund and the foundation also encourage government policies that foster what the Aga Khan first called an enabling environment of favourable legislative and fiscal structures.
The agencies’ common goal is to help the poor achieve a level of self-reliance whereby they are able to plan their own livelihoods and help those even more needy than themselves. To pursue their mandates, AKDN institutions rely on volunteers as well as remunerated professionals.
AKDN focuses on civil society with the Civil Society Programme. A number of organizations are sponsored by the World Bank with the help of partner foundations.
The Aga Khan Trust for Culture co-ordinates the Imamat’s cultural activities. Its programmes include the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, the Aga Khan Historic Cities Programme, and the Education and Culture Programme. The trust also provides financial support for the Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture at Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the United States, and also support to cultural development and preservation with the Award for Architecture, Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC), Historic Cities, Museums & Exhibitions, Islamic Architecture, Music.
The Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED), Aga Khan Agency for Microfinance (AKAM), Financial Services, Industrial Promotion, Tourism Promotion, Media, Aviation Services are some of the agencies and programs offered for economic development.
In the field of education AKDN has the Aga Khan Education Services (AKES), Aga Khan University (AKU), Aga Khan Academies (AKA) and the University of Central Asia (UCA).
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