Contributor: Syamsul Rijal
Dr. Syamsul Rijal, the Head of the PhD Program in Islamic Studies, recently participated in the Visiting Program of the Going Global Partnership as the third representative from UIII, following Professor Noorhaidi Hasan and Dr. Yanwar Pribadi in May and October-November 2022, respectively. From 16 January to 2 March 2023, Dr. Rijal served as a visiting scholar at the HRC Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Centre for the Study of Islam in the Contemporary World at the University of Edinburgh, where he engaged in various academic activities.
During his visit, Dr. Rijal taught several sessions in two courses at the University of Edinburgh, namely the International, Transnational, and Globalized Dynamics of the Muslim World and the Research and Dissertation Methods on the Muslim World. He also participated as one of three speakers in a webinar entitled "Islam, Religious Authority, and Migration" on 12 March 2023. In addition to attending regular meetings and seminars at the Alwaleed Centre and supervising two students, Dr. Rijal took advantage of the opportunity to access the University library and focus on his research. His office on campus provided an excellent environment for interacting with scholars and fellows with diverse backgrounds and academic interests in Muslim societies.
Dr. Rijal's visit to the University of Edinburgh marks another successful collaboration between UIII and the Alwaleed Centre, fostering academic exchange and building bridges between scholars of Islamic Studies. His participation in the Visiting Program has contributed significantly to the enhancement of academic cooperation and scholarly dialogue between UIII and the University of Edinburgh.
In addition to Dr. Rijal, two students from the Faculty of Islamic Studies at UIII, Muhammad Wahyudi and Abdul Muiz, also had the opportunity to participate in a three-month exchange program at the Alwaleed Centre. During their stay, they were required to take three classes and consult with their assigned advisors to improve their research proposals and conduct literature research for their MA theses.
This exchange program is part of the joint partnerships between UIII and the University of Edinburgh under the Going Global Partnership project. The aim of this project is to establish a dual degree program between the two universities in the near future. In 2022, two scholars from the Alwaleed Centre, Dr. Sarah Muwahidah and Dr. Kholoud Al-Ajarma, became visiting scholars at the Faculty of Islamic Studies at UIII. In 2023, the Director of the Edinburgh Alwaleed Centre, Prof. Frédéric Volpi, will be the third visiting scholar at UIII.
The arrival of Dr. Rijal and the two students at the University of Edinburgh has contributed to strengthening the collaboration between UIII and the University of Edinburgh. This collaboration has received support from the Ministry of Religious Affairs, and it is hoped that the dual degree program between the two universities will commence in September 2023.