He has a PhD in the philosophy of Islamic law from the University of Wales, UK, and a PhD in systems analysis from the University of Waterloo, Canada. Early in his life, he memorized the Quran and undertook traditional studies at the Study Circles of Al-Azhar Mosque in Cairo, Egypt. He has held professorial positions at the universities of Waterloo, Ryerson and Carleton in Canada, Alexandria University in Egypt, Faculty of Islamic Studies in Qatar, American University of Sharjah in UAE, and University of Brunei Darussalam in Brunei. He continues to lecture on Islam and its law internationally, and has written 25 books in Arabic and English, some of which have been translated to 25 languages.
He has had to make sacrifices like spending time in apartheid’s prison and being placed under house arrest. He has been involved in both the Islamic Movement (as co-founder of the SA’s Call of Islam) and the Interfaith Movement. Through his writings, lectures and speaking engagements he has been instrumental in mobilizing Muslims and the broader faith communities toward a deeper understanding of Islam and faith under conditions of oppression (under apartheid) and currently under conditions of globalization. For such contributions to South Africa’s reconstruction and development and his global work, Ambassador Rasool has been the recipient of a number of leadership awards and two honorary Doctorates. He is the founder of The World for All Foundation that rethinks the intellectual tools available to Muslims and faith communities. He was a Distinguished Scholar in Residence at Georgetown University’s Al Waleed bin Talal Center and now remains a Senior Fellow at Georgetown University.
Shaykh Sharif Banna is a scholar, author and entrepreneur. He is the Founding Director of the Islamic Institute for Development & Research (IIDR) in the UK and an Advisory Board Member of the Research Center for Islamic Legislation and Ethics (CILE), a think tank based at Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Qatar Foundation. He taught courses on Islamic Law and Ethics at Oxford University. He is a successful entrepreneur and CEO of a global award-winning publishing and media company which has offices in 5 countries and operates in over 120 countries. He is listed in IsFin’s 500 most influential people who are pioneering the Islamic economy.
As an author Shaykh Sharif Banna has authored and translated over fifteen works on law, ethics and spirituality including acclaimed international bestseller Journey through the Quran. His forthcoming titles include An Introduction to Islamic Legal Philosophy and Halal But Un-Islamic: Restoring the Ethical Core of Islam. Sharif Banna’s preliminarily studies of the classical Islamic sciences was under the tutelage of his father Shaykh Muhammad Abdul Qadir, a renowned scholar specialising in Quranic exegesis (tafsir) and later with other scholars from Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Bahrain, Tunisia and India. He holds a BA (Hons) in Arabic & Law (SOAS, University of London) and also studied at the Institute Européen des Sciences Humanities (France) and the University of Alexandria (Egypt). He is pursuing his postgraduate research in Islamic Legal Theory at Al-Azhar University. Shaykh Sharif Banna is passionate about leadership and exponential social impact through knowledge, entrepreneurship and civic empowerment. He is the chair of several UK based charities and philanthropy foundations which seek to leverage the power of technology in tackling humanitarian challenges of the 21st Century. In recognition of his contribution to civil society, he was one of the youngest recipients of a royal award (MBE) from the Queen of England.
Dr. Zaid has over 20 years-experience in contributing to and leading nonprofits like educational institutions and community-based organizations. He sits on the boards of several non-profit organizations and is actively involved in community development projects. Prior to joining MI, Zaid had 10 years professional experience in the field of advanced analytics and was Vice President of Risk-Modeling at a top US financial institution. Zaid obtained his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Utah and is a frequent economic commentator at several media outlets. His current research interests are focused on developing a maqasid approach to economic issues
Prior studies include a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering with honors, Assiut University, Egypt. She is licensed for training from The Institute of Leadership & Management in the UK. She holds BTEC Internal Verifier and External Verifier certificates from The Professional Development Training in Dubai. Her interests focus on topics in modern learning trends, especially inquiry-based learning, exploration and academic independence, and education policies in developing countries.
Dr. Motaz is a Philosophy of Religions and Maqasid Researcher. Motaz now is a Visiting Research Scholar in Baylor University in Texas. Motaz Has BA and MA degree in Islamic Studies from World Islamic Sciences and Education University in Jordan and a Ph.D. from the International Islamic University of Malaysia (ISTAC) in Maqasid AlShariah. Dr. Motaz has a diverse experience, in addition to philosophy and theology, he is a certified professional mechanical engineer and an entrepreneur with 10 years experience in the field of production, contracting, and construction.
Dr. Isra Brifkani is a Senior Research Fellow. She obtained her bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate degrees in education from Middle Tennessee State University. She has over 15 years of educational research and practice experience, has published in peer-reviewed journals, as well as presented at national and international education conferences. Her research focuses on the importance of cultivating holistic approaches to teaching and learning. Dr. Brifkani believes that the educational experience should be transformative and inspire positive change in students, academically, spiritually, socially, emotionally, and physically.