Professor Bernard Haykel, Professor Christophe Jaffrelot of Sciences Po, and Associate Professor Manan Ahmed of Columbia University have been awarded a Henry Luce Foundation grant of $385,000 to fund a major three-year research project on Muslim communities in India. Haykel, who is also the Director of the Institute for the Transregional Study of the Contemporary Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia, and Jaffrelot developed the project, which “aims to offer new analyses and insights into the challenges faced by Muslim communities in India today” and through the participation of over thirty scholars and researchers in India, the United States, France, and the United Kingdom “will provide a detailed examination of the multiple factors impacting Indian Muslim communities and shaping their future.” Ahmed, who specializes in the history of South Asia “will lead the development of visualization and spatial mapping highlighting the results of the research.” Other key partners in this project are US Sciences Po Foundation and the Alliance Program.
Haykel noted the importance of the project: “Further study of the Muslim communities of India—a large and diverse minority that has faced considerable challenges since independence—is much needed. Our project aims to generate factual data about the social, economic and political conditions of these communities as well as to produce original scholarly analyses that explain the persistent marginalization of Muslims. Princeton University has a long and distinguished tradition in Islamic studies, has one of the finest research libraries in the world and excellent faculty and students who will collaborate on this project. Our study of the Muslim communities in India will also be informed by a transregional and comparative approach, one that will take into account comparable dynamics in wider South Asia, the Middle East and Central Asia.”
The project’s findings will be disseminated through a final report and a collective book. In addition, the project will create a dedicated website which will feature interactive maps and graphs, video interviews with members of Muslim and Hindu communities in India, as well as podcasts with experts and academics.