The core research team consists of two post-doctoral fellows Dr Harith Hasan Al-Qarawee and Dr Harout Akdedian. The project is supervised by Prof Aziz Al-Azmeh (Professor of History at CEU) and Prof Nadia Al-Bagdadi (Director of the Institute of Advanced Study at CEU).



Dr Harith Hasan Al-Qarawee

Dr. Al-Qarawee has a PhD in Political Science from Sant’ Anna School for Advanced Studies in Pisa. Prior to joining the SFM team, he was a research fellow at the Crown Center for Middle East Studies at Brandeis University and he continues this association as a non-resident fellow. He was a fellow at Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies-Harvard University (2014/15). Dr Al-Qarawee’s current research interests deal with authority, religion and Islamist militant movements in the Middle East. He published articles, essays and papers, both in English and Arabic, dealing with themes of sectarianism, Iraq’s system of government, ISIS and Shi’a political and religious groups. Dr Al-Qarawee was a member of the working group on religion and identity, as part of the Atlantic Council’s Task Force for the Middle East, and a member in the Atlantic Council’s Task Force for the future of Iraq. 

Dr Harout Akdedian

Dr Harout Akdedian has a PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of New England in Australia where he taught in Islamic Studies, politics, and peace and conflict studies. His research focuses on the rise of radicalized Islamic groups and ethno-religious relations in Syria with particular attention to state-society relations and social exclusion in state formation processes. Dr Akdedian was a research fellow at the Human Rights Center in Costa Rica and worked as a freelance journalist in Lebanon and Syria. He has a BA in Political Science from Haigazian University in Lebanon and a Masters in International Law from the UN mandated University for Peace in Costa Rica.



Prof Aziz Al-Azmeh

Prof Aziz Al-Azmeh received a D.Phil. in Oriental Studies from the University of Oxford having previously attended university in Beirut and Tübingen. He has been a long-term fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study, Berlin, and fellow of the Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study and the Collegium Budapest, and was resident scholar at the Rockefeller Foundation Center for Scholars in Bellagio. He is presently CEU University Professor in the Department of History at the Central European University, which he joined in 2012. He has been Visiting Professor at Yale University, Columbia University, the University of California, Berkeley, Georgetown University, and more recently at the Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations of the Aga Khan University (London) and SciencesPo Paris. He is the author of, among other things, Islams and Modernities, and his latest book in English is The Emergence of Islam in late Antiquity (Cambridge University Press).

Prof Nadia Al-Bagdadi

Prof Al-Bagdadi is a historian of modern Islamic history, thought, literature     and culture. She studied at the Freie Universität in Berlin, in Cairo and Tunis. She examines in-depth the various actors, structures and relationships of     Late Ottoman Modernity and Muslim Reformism in the Arab East.  She           connects Arab and Ottoman history with European history. One of her           current research projects relocates the entangled connections of European and Arab borders of faith and the role of religion, scholarship and modernity                                                          between Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean. Prof Al-Bagdadi deals                                                                  systematically with the question of gender, religion and modernity in                                                                      nineteenth-century Middle East.


Associated Fellow

Dr Jana Jevtić

Dr Jana Jevtić is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science and International Relations at the Sarajevo School of Science and Technology (SSST. She has a BA from King’s College London and a Masters in International Relations and European Studies from the Central European University (CEU), Budapest and a PhD in Sociology and Social Anthropology from the same institution. Her research interests concern religious practice, media technologies, and the emergence of new actors and forms of religiosity in Europe. She gives particular attention to locally specific movements that are based on Muslims symbols, discourses, and historical experiences but, at the same time, tie to global networks and ideas about human rights and social justice.