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Across the world, hundreds of thousands of properties are under the management of charitable trusts and endowments known in the Islamic law as waqf. Similarly, there are several philanthropic efforts outside the Islamic law that are well known for their roles and services in community development. It holds great potential for all the philanthropic foundations, regardless of their religious affiliations, to complement each other’s efforts in addressing the socio-economic needs of the global community.

The 2022 Harvard University Muslim Association (HUMA) Islamic Finance Conference aims to bring together academics, professionals, and community leaders of waqf and philanthropic foundations in the United States and from across the world. The conference will cover the effectiveness of these institutions especially the concept of cash waqf and leveraging charitable giving that is targeted to community and their endeavours as an effective tool to address the societal needs. The conference will also examine the use of modern tools and techniques to overcome the challenges in the management of philanthropic institutions.

Themes explored by the conference will include:

  • Perspectives and practices of major religions on philanthropy: this will include all the major religions
  • Tools and techniques and other underutilized mechanisms traditionally available, technology (e.g., blockchain), and transparency/governance.
  • Highlighting the status of endowments and philanthropic foundations and its management around the world
  • Impact of endowments and philanthropic foundations in the socio-economic development of the community

Silver Jubilee Celebrations

The Harvard Islamic Finance Conference commemorates its 25 years since hosting the first forum in 1997. In its rich and vibrant history, the forum over the years has discussed contemporary topics and pressing issues and hosted various luminaries including a Nobel Laureate and high-ranking individuals in government establishments in the US and across the world as well as Islamic finance industry stalwarts.

About the Organizers

The Conference is organized by a steering committee of Harvard students and alumni under the auspices of the HUMA and Harvard Islamic Society (HIS) organizations. HUMA is an active alumni organization founded in 2004, and is focused on alumni networking, supporting the Muslim community on campus, increasing Islamic resources on campus and increasing access to Harvard for Muslims.

Please direct all your conference inquiries to: islamic.finance@harvardmuslimalumni.org