Processes of Change in Muslim Societies and Cultures​

Like other parts of the world, Muslim societies are undergoing rapid political, demographic, technological and cultural transformations, which are shaping intra- and inter-national relationships, power relations, self-perceptions and religious sensibilities. The study of the processes and forces that drive these changes – both in Muslim majority societies and Western countries with Muslim populations – is a fundamental aspect of the challenge that the Institute has set for itself. While the focus of research will be on Muslim contexts, such a project is not possible without taking into account change in the global context; indeed Muslim cultures and societies are integrally linked to, and embedded in, the processes and impacts of globalization and transnational exchanges.

The contemporary social sciences and humanities provide powerful intellectual tools to study the range of ways in which Muslim populations participate in and engage with local and global transformations and change. In its research and educational programmes, the Institute encourages a gendered, ethical and pluralistic perspective for analysis in addition to more conventional political, social and economic approaches.

The Institute adopts interdisciplinary approaches to address questions pertaining to social change, development and new forms of socio-economic, political and cultural practices and differentiation in Muslim contexts.

This multi-tiered research area concentrates on the production, negotiations and expressions of social, political, and religious forms and practices in relation to the processes of change in Muslim cultures and societies. It reveals the ways in which state, legal and educational institutions appropriate – and are appropriated by – local and global forces and processes. 

Research Questions and Faculty Research

How do global forces interact with local processes and social structures, and with what impact on institutions and policy?

  • Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Late Industrialisation in Malaysia  - Jeff Tan Privatisation, Regulation and Service Delivery: Water Sector Reforms in Malaysia - Jeff Tan

How are Muslim populations in Western contexts shaping and shaped by Western state, legal and educational structures and institutions?

  • Young Shias in the West (URC funded project) - Kathryn Spellman-Poots

Processes of Change: MA Dissertations

  • Habitus through the Prism of Marriage Practices: A Comparative Analysis of Mirpuris Living in Bradford, UK - Mehr Agha

  • Nikah Sirri between Local Women and Middle Eastern Tourists in Kampung Sampay, Puncak, West Java: An Exploration of Marriage and its Meaning - Ika Arika

  • Women’s Empowerment in Ethnic Communities: A Case Study of Bericho - Hina Baz