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Durham University launches new doctoral training centre in Islamic Finance
(5 July 2011)
Durham University is to build on its renowned experience in Islamic finance and business related research with the launch of a new doctoral training centre.
The Durham Centre for Islamic Economics and Finance is a collaboration between the University’s Durham Business School and the School of Government and International Affairs.
The centre will begin operating in the autumn for the training of new PhD students, and will also provide further training to the existing large number of PhD students in Islamic finance related subject areas.
Durham has been a centre for research in Islamic finance for over 25 years, with a significant history of PhD study. The new centre will build on this success and the international popularity of the Durham Islamic Finance Summer School, which runs this year from Monday, July 4 to Friday, July 8.
The Islamic banking and finance market has experienced substantial and unexpected growth in recent years, growing at a rate of 10 to 15 per cent per year.
Today, more than 500 Islamic financial institutions including the international banks with their Islamic finance windows are operating worldwide, which are claimed to manage assets worth no less than £650billion.
In Malaysia, the Islamic institutions are planned to capture 20 per cent of the market share in terms of assets owned by the end of 2011, while it is expected that Islamic finance will be the mainstream finance in the Gulf region in a couple of decades.
Such immense growth has brought Islamic finance to the attention of the international banking community.
During the current financial crisis, the Islamic finance industry has shown relative resilience without undergoing major difficulties, despite the fact that it is very much integrated with the global financial world.
Professor Rob Dixon, Dean of Durham Business School, said: “Due to such exciting and dynamic developments in the Islamic financial and banking sector, it is important that financiers and bankers who are working in the field, or who wish to enter the Islamic financial market, are aware of the principles, operations, techniques and mechanism of Islamic finance and financial products as well as the dynamics of Islamic financial and capital markets.
“Our programme on Islamic finance, expanded with the Durham Centre for Islamic Economics and Finance, aims to provide such skills and expertise by offering a diversified number of programmes to equip business people with the necessary knowledge to operate in this dynamic market.”
Dr Mehmet Asutay, the Director of the Durham Islamic Finance Summer School, and a senior member of the new centre, said: “The centre will provide exclusive facilities for research students who have chosen to specialise in Islamic finance, which will enhance Durham University’s long-standing efforts to contribute to the development of academic and intellectual discourse and the practice of Islamic finance.
“It will also support the international reputation and recognition of Durham University in the area of Islamic finance related studies.”
Durham University offers postgraduate research (PhD and MA by research) and taught (MA and MSc) degrees in Islamic banking, finance, management and economics, and the highly-regarded Durham Islamic Finance Summer School.
Durham has produced many graduates and trained many financiers and bankers who work in the Islamic banking and financial sector and contribute to the teaching of Islamic economics and finance all over the world.
With the launch of the doctoral training centre the university is seeking to consolidate its position as the leading centre for postgraduate research on Islamic finance, as well as extending its activities into the professional realm.
The launch of the training centre will enable links to the Economic and Social Research Council North East DTC Committee, which brings together representatives from Durham and Newcastle universities, and also the ESRC North East Regional Network, which includes Northumbria, Sunderland and Teesside universities.