On October 2-3, 2018 in Indianapolis, the Muslim Philanthropy Initiative (MPI) at the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, in partnership with Lake Institute on Faith & Giving, International Institute of Islamic Thought, and the Center on Muslim Philanthropy, will host its second symposium on Muslim Philanthropy and Civil Society.
Started by Dr. Shariq Siddiqui, who serves as the inaugural visiting director, MPI seeks to make the Muslim philanthropic sector larger and more effective. One of MPI’s focus areas is original academic research examining the broad scope of Muslim philanthropy and civil society.
“The symposium is one of the largest gatherings of scholars presenting research in the area of Muslim Philanthropy and civil society,” Dr. Siddiqui says. “Scholars from around the world are attending to present research and further needed dialogue in this area of research.”
Scholars from across the globe (from Indonesia to Egypt to right here in Indianapolis, USA) and disciplines (Anthropology, Environmental Studies, Sociology, Religious Studies, and Public Administration to name just a few) will present their research at the two-day symposium. Articles from the symposium that successfully undergo double-blind-peer review will be published in a future issue of MPI’s Journal of Muslim Philanthropy & Civil Society, co-edited by Drs. Siddiqui and Scott C. Alexander.
Dr. David King, Karen Lake Buttrey Director of Lake Institute on Faith & Giving, served as a chair at the first symposium in 2016. Reflecting on the symposium, Dr. King recalled that the symposium “(expanded) our field of vision, reminding us that the study of philanthropy, particularly religious philanthropy, is never simply measuring dollars, cents, and donor intent. Religious philanthropy, and Muslim philanthropy in particular, can serve as an entrée into much broader and deeper questions about how individuals, institutions, and communities engage with one another.
“Through these multiple vantage points, (the first symposium on Muslim Philanthropy and Civil Society) pushed us to consider questions from within specific academic disciplines. Nevertheless, (it) also made the turn to ask bigger questions of how we might study Muslim philanthropy more broadly and what these questions mean for our contemporary context,” Dr. King explained.
As Dr. Siddiqui says, “this year’s symposium has sessions that examine levels of giving and civic activity. However, it goes beyond that by looking at the precognitive state that exists before the act is made. This year’s symposium helps situate the important role empathy, forgiveness, and civic mindedness (play in) Muslim philanthropy and how those elements can affect nonprofit and civic activity seeking to make the world a better place.”
Some of the topics of the 2018 symposium include:
- Muslim American Activist Linda Sarsour and the Fate of U.S. Democracy
- The Politics and Poetics of giving in Contemporary Turkey
- Empathy, Muslim Philanthropy and Advancing Education Reform in Muslim
- The Muslim Students’ Association and the Building of American Muslim Philanthropy
- The Annual Ramadan Charity Fundraiser and the Production of Muslim Ethical Norms
- Philanthropy in 20th century Saudi Arabia
- The Contribution of the Islamic Wakf to the Formation of the Modern and Western Institution of the Foundation
- The Role of Muslim Philanthropy in Alleviating Muslim Educational Diffidence in India
- Ethno-Religious Philanthropy: Research Focus and Methodological Challenges in The Study of American-Muslim Philanthropy
- And more!
The symposium is free and open to the public. Due to the limited capacity in the Lilly Auditorium, all attendees are encouraged to RSVP by September 24.