On Thursday, 15th October 2009, the Aga Khan University, Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations hosted a major event to launch its 3 new series of academic publications. Held at the British Library in London, the event was well attended by people from various locations across the UK, along with several international visitors.
Guests included several academics, such as professors Robert and Carol Hillenbrand, noted authorities on scholarship about Islam, cultural attachés such as the Honorary Khalid Nadeem, Director of South Asian and Middle East Forum, multilaterals and diplomats from the Commonwealth Secretariat and elsewhere, members of the media such as Hamid Ismailov, Head of Central Asia and the Caucasus department within the BBC World Service and leadership from various Muslim communities, among others.
In addition, the CEO and senior management of the Edinburgh University Press were also present, as the publishers for these books in partnership with AKU-ISMC, and encouraged book sales during the evening.
Speakers at the event included Firoz Rasul, President of the Aga Khan University who highlighted the role that ISMC plays within AKU through its research and publications projects and of the Institute as a space for generating new ways of thinking about Muslims, their heritage and their traditions.
He was followed by Professor Carole Hillenbrand from Edinburgh University, who spoke first about Edinburgh University Press as serious academic publishers with regard to scholarship on Islam and Muslim societies, and went on to voice enthusiasm of EUP for the partnership with AKU-ISMC.
Finally, Dr. Abdou Filali-Ansary, Director of ISMC, spoke about the context and significance of the four publications, briefly touching upon forthcoming volumes and finally, acknowledging the effort undertaken to publish four volumes within a year of formulating the partnership with EUP.
The speeches were followed by a lively reception; with an elegant and sophisticated setting, delicious canapés and an energetic buzz of conversation; concluding a most enjoyable evening.
Published in partnership with Edinburgh University Press, all four volumes are now available across the United Kingdom in all major bookstores and online at www.eupjournals.com/page/IslamicStudies.
Coordinator, Planning & Academic Development
Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations