Academic Committee

Since its inception, The Barakat Trust has sought to support research into the history of the art, architecture and material culture of Islamic societies. Thirty years ago, conspicuously few scholars from the Islamic world worked in this field, which was dominated by scholars and students from Europe and North America. The Barakat Trust originally set out to shift this balance by concentrating its support on Muslim scholars and students from Muslim majority countries -- who have traditionally been underrepresented, while also assisting the most deserving projects irrespective of the backgrounds of the applicants.

Today, the many hundreds of projects, scholars and students supported by The Barakat Trust have all contributed to a greater appreciation and understanding of the material and visual culture of Islamic societies, across a huge variety of fields, from academic research and scholarly publications, to archaeological excavation and fieldwork, conservation, preservation and restoration, exhibitions, colloquia and conferences, lectures, seminars and workshops, digitisation and documentation of collections in libraries and museums, educational and training programmes, and travel grants for research students and scholars at the beginning of their careers.

Recipients of over 600 awards have come from over forty countries, united by their common commitment to and passion for the art and material culture of the Islamic world. 

Academic Advisory Committee

Hamida A. Alireza

Trustee & Founding Member

Professor James W. Allan

Emeritus Professor of Eastern Art, University of Oxford, UK

Prof James Allan read his degree in classical Arabic at Oxford, and spent most of his career in the Ashmolean Museum as curator of the Islamic collections and latterly Keeper of Eastern Art. He also set up an Inter-faith Exhibition Service. For the last six years before his retirement in 2012 he continued to teach Islamic art in the Khalili Research Centre. He leads tours in the Middle East, and has published numerous articles and books on Islamic art, his most recent book being, The art and architecture of Twelver Shi’ism: Iraq, Iran and the Indian Subcontinent.

Shahnaz Bagherzade

Trustee and Founding Member. Phil Islamic Art, Oxford University, UK

Shahnaz Bagherzade was born in Iran and educated in Germany with a degree in 'Abitur'. She pursued her passion for Islamic art and culture at University of Oxford with an MPhil in Islamic art & architecture and has supported numerous charities and projects promoting Islamic art and culture.

Dr. Teresa Fitzherbert

Faculty Tutor in Islamic Art, Khalili Research Centre, University of Oxford, UK

Dr Teresa Fitzherbert is interested in Persian illustrated manuscripts particularly those produced in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries under Mongol and Timurid rule. Other interests include the artistic interface of Eastern Christianity and Islam in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries; the figural buff ware of mediaeval Nishapur; and before retirement also curated the Creswell Photographic Archive at the Ashmolean Museum. Recent publications include articles on Jalayirid painting, the Freer Canteen, and depictions of the hunt on Ilkhanid metalwork.

Professor Jeremy Johns

Chairman of the Academic Advisory Committee, Director, Khalili Research Centre, Professor of the Art and Archaeology of the Islamic Mediterranean, University of Oxford, UK

Professor Jeremy Johns is principally interested in relations between Muslim and Christian societies in the medieval Mediterranean as manifested in material and visual culture. His research has focused upon the archaeology of the transition from late antiquity to early Islam in the Levant and, especially, upon the archaeology, history and art history of Sicily under Islamic and Norman rule, from the Muslims' conquest of the island in the 9th century to the destruction of the Islamic community of Sicily by Frederick II in the 13th century.

Dr Mariam Rosser-Owen

Curator Middle East, Asian Department, Victoria & Albert Museum, UK curator responsible for the Arab World Collections at the V&A 

Dr Mariam Rosser-Owen specialises in the Islamic Mediterranean, especially al-Andalus and the Maghrib, but more generally is interested in material culture connections around the Mediterranean during the medieval period. Her interests include how people commission works of art and what messages they express through these commissions.

She completed her DPhil at the University of Oxford (Oriental Institute) in 2002, supervised by Prof. Jeremy Johns. The title was "Articulating the Hijaba: 'Amirid Artistic and Cultural Patronage in al-Andalus, circa 970-1010 AD". She is now preparing this for publication. Her interests range widely, and she is increasingly working to promote a more integrated role for the material culture of North Africa within the art history of the medieval Mediterranean - both through her own research and by providing forums for others.

Dr Zeynep Yürekli-Görkay

University Lecturer in Islamic Art and Archaeology, University of Oxford, UK

Dr Zeynep Yürekli-Görkay is interested in Islamic architecture; illustrated manuscripts; Sufi shrines; hagiography and historiography. Amongst her publications, please see 'Sufi Shrines under the Ottomans', in The Cambridge World History of Religious Architecture, ed. R. Etlin et al (Cambridge University Press). 'Architectural Patronage and the Rise of the Ottomans', in The Companion to Islamic Art and Architecture, ed. G. Necipolu and B. Flood, Volume II: From the Mongols to Modernism (Wiley–Blackwell).

Honorary Member

Dr. Julian Raby

Director (retired), Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Smithsonian Institute, Washington, USA

Grant Types

  • The Grants Awards open on 2 January 2019

  • The Barakat Trust's grant applications programme for 2019 will open on 2 January 2019 and will close at midnight GMT on 31 March 2019. No applications received after that date will be considered.

  • Applicants will be informed of the Barakat Trust's decision shortly after the end of April 2019.

  • Scope of Awards

  • The Barakat Trust awards are open to applicants worldwide in the fields of:

    • research into the history of the art and architecture, and the archaeology and material culture of Islamic societies, including archaeological and other fieldwork, and research trips;

    • the conservation, preservation, restoration, and presentation to the public of artefacts, buildings and archaeological sites produced by Islamic societies.

    • the work of libraries, museums and other public collections in the conservation, documentation, and presentation of artefacts and manuscripts produced by Islamic societies in their broadest sense, including the digitisation of archives and collections, and the training of conservation and curatorial staff;

    • the organisation of events intended to further research in the history of the art, architecture, archaeology, and material culture of Islamic societies, including colloquia and conferences, lectures, seminars and workshops, exhibitions, and attendance at such events;

    • The Barakat Trust does not offer awards intended to cover the fees and regular living expenses of students (except only under Categories A1  and B2, B3 and B4 below), but postgraduate students are encouraged to apply for small grants for travel (e.g. to attend conferences or conduct research) under Category A2 below 

The Barakat Trust regrets that through this Awards Programme it is unable to make awards for any purpose except those set out above. Its focus is on the artistic and cultural heritage of the Islamic World. It does not make awards through this Awards Programme to support the creative work of artists, architects and craftspeople, and does not normally support the study of contemporary art, architecture or material culture unless strongly linked to the study of the history and heritage of the Islamic World.

From 2019 due to strict financial regulations, awards will no longer be paid directly to individuals and must instead be paid to either to the institution to which an applicant belongs, or to the institution at which an applicant is applying to conduct research or to study. The application form and procedure for 2019 reflects these changes.  This does not mean that individuals cannot apply, simply that payment is to be made to institutions on their behalf and for their benefit.

Categories of Awards

The Academic Advisory Committee annually defines the categories and values of awards within which applications may be made, and retains the right to adjust the number and value of awards, according to the funds available and the quality and quantity of applications received.

Please read carefully Section B. Scope of Awards above. Please do not apply unless your project falls into one of the fields listed under Paragraph 3 above.

To be kept informed of future grants as well as events, conferences and news then signup to our mailing list  here.

For grant related queries email: barakat.trust@orinst.ox.ac.uk

Only consider applying if you meet the criteria in the Scope of Awards.

A) GRANTS BY COMPETITIVE APPLICATION

A1. Barakat International Studentship

One scholarship of £15,000 to a Muslim student from the Islamic world who has already been accepted on one of the following taught Masters courses. Where a student has been accepted on a two-year course, the grant may be awarded or renewed for the second year of the course, on the condition that the student is able to demonstrate outstanding performance during the first year of the course. Applicants must supply evidence of acceptance before any award can be made.

  • American University in Cairo, MA in Islamic Art and ArchaeologySchool of Oriental and African Studies, MA in History of Art and Architecture of the Islamic Middle East

  • University College London, MA in Managing Archaeological Sites

  • University College London, MA in Museum Studies

  • University College London, MA in Principles of Conservation

  • University College London, MSc in Conservation for Archaeology and Museums

  • University of Durham, MA in Museum and Artefact Studies

  • University of Durham, MA in Conservation of Archaeological and Museum Objects

  • University of East Anglia, MA in Museum Studies

  • University of Leicester, MA in Museum Studies

  • University of Sussex, West Dean College, Graduate Diploma/Postgraduate Diploma/MA in Conservation Studies

  • University of York, MA in Conservation Studies

  • University of York, MSc in Digital Heritage

  • Other one-year taught Masters courses in a subject relevant to the study of Islamic art, architecture, archaeology and material culture.

Note: Applicants are advised that awards may no longer be paid directly to individuals, and must instead be paid either to the institution to which an applicant belongs, or to the institution at which an applicant is applying to conduct research or to study. A representative of the institution to which payment will be made will be required to affirm the cooperation and support of the institution on the Application Form.

Apply Now »

A2. Barakat Postgraduate Student & Postdoctoral Scholar Grants 

Postgraduate students, and early career scholars who were awarded a doctorate after 30 June 2013, may apply for grants with an upper limit of £1,500 towards the costs of travel for fieldwork and study, attending conferences, and participating in educational and/or training programmes. 

Note: Applicants are advised that awards may no longer be paid directly to individuals. Awards may be paid in one of two ways: (i) either to the institution to which an applicant belong or  at which an applicant is applying to conduct research or to study, in which case a representative of the institution to which payment will be made will be required to affirm the cooperation and support of the institution on the Application Form; (ii) or on the recipient's behalf directly to the supplier of accommodation (e.g. the hotel) and travel (e.g. the airline).

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A3. Barakat Major Awards

Established scholars attached to research institutions, including but not restricted to universities, museums and libraries, may apply for awards with an upper limit of £10,000 for research, educational and/or training programmes, and other projects relating to the archaeology, the conservation and the history of the material and visual culture of Muslim societies.

Note: Applicants are advised that awards may no longer be paid directly to individuals, and must instead be paid either to the institution to which an applicant belongs, or to the institution at or through which an applicant is applying to conduct research or to study. A representative of the institution to which payment will be made will be required to affirm the cooperation and support of the institution on the Application Form.

Apply Now »

A4. Barakat Conservation Awards

Grants with an upper limit of £7,000 each towards a conservation project or the training of a conservator in the fields of Islamic art and architecture. 

Note: Applicants are advised that awards may no longer be paid directly to individuals, and must instead be paid either to the institution to which an applicant belongs, or to the institution at or through which an applicant is applying to conduct research or to study. A representative of the institution to which payment will be made will be required to affirm the cooperation and support of the institution on the Application Form.

Apply Now »

A5. Barakat Publication Grants

Grants with an upper limit of £6,000 towards the costs of a major publication on Islamic art, architecture, archaeology etc. 

Note: Applicants are advised that awards may no longer be paid directly to individuals, and must instead be paid either to the institution to which an applicant belongs, or to the publisher. A representative of the institution or publisher to which payment will be made will be required to affirm their cooperation and support on the Application Form.

Apply Now »

A6. Barakat Digitisation Grants

One grant of up to £50,000 per year, for a maximum of three years, towards the costs of making available online any major collection of Islamic art, architecture and archaeology. The grant is made from zakat, and therefore only Islamic institutions, libraries and museums in Islamic lands and Muslim principle applicants are eligible to apply. Institutions which can raise matching funds may receive priority. Successful applicants must undertake: (1) to adhere to the standards of digitisation agreed with The Barakat Trust; (2) to store all data with a cloud storage provider approved by The Barakat Trust; (3) to make the digitised data freely available over the web, save only that, with the agreement of The Barakat Trust, the institution shall be entitled to publish low resolution and/or watermarked images of artefacts, and to levy reasonable charges for the supply of high resolution images and for the reproduction of images. 

Note: Applicants are advised that awards may no longer be paid directly to individuals, and must instead be paid either to the institution to which an applicant belongs, or to the institution at or through which an applicant is applying to conduct research or to study. A representative of the institution to which payment will be made will be required to affirm the cooperation and support of the institution on the Application Form.

Apply Now »

B) GRANTS FOR STUDY IN OXFORD

B1. Barakat Senior Scholar

One visiting scholarship of £10,000 to enable an established Muslim scholar to come to Oxford for three months to carry out a specific programme of research and to deliver a lecture on their research.

Apply Now »

B2. Barakat Postdoctoral Scholarship

One or more awards of £18,000 each to enable a Muslim post-doctoral scholar, who was awarded a doctorate after 30 June 2012, to spend nine months (normally October to June) in Oxford to carry out a specific programme of research or to prepare such research for publication. (Note to Trustees: The successful applicant will receive the award on arrival in England in nine monthly instalments, which are intended to cover all expenses, including travel, visas, health charges, health and travel insurance, accommodation and other living expenses. This will be explained in the offer letter.) Please read separate guidelines.

B3. Barakat Oxford Studentship

One studentship to cover one year's fees for a Muslim student already accepted by the Faculty of Oriental Studies of the University of Oxford to read for an M. St or MPhil in Islamic Art and Archaeology. Renewal for the second year of the MPhil may be granted to candidates who perform well in the qualifying examination, but the grant may not be extended to cover doctoral studies. (Notes to Trustees. (1) The fees for 2019-20 are £25,387: if we don't expect to have that money in April, we should either cancel this award or cap it at — say — £15,000 in line with A2 above. Living expenses amount to a further £13,000 which the BT does not cover. (2) The studentship will be paid directly to the successful applicant's college. This will be explained in the offer letter.)

Apply Now »

B4. Barakat Oxford DPhil Bursary

One bursary equivalent to one year's Home/EU fees for a student already conducting research for a D.Phil. in Islamic Art and Archaeology at the Faculty of Oriental Studies of the University of Oxford, who will have completed the process of Transfer of Status by 1 October 2019. (Notes to Trustees. (1) This is the Bursary offered in return for the administrative and other services provided by Oxford for which we no longer charge. We haven't listed it before, and have not until now asked students to apply for this grant on the application form, but we propose that they should in future do so. (2) The fees for 2019-20 are £7,730. We can either pay a Home/EU student the total fees, or contribute that amount towards the fees of an Overseas student. (3) The studentship will be paid directly to the successful applicant's college. This will be explained in the offer letter.)

Apply Now »

Note: Apportionment of funds - Some of our donations are Zakat (alms traditionally given to support Muslim communities) while others are general charitable donations whose uses are unrestricted. The restrictions outlined in some of the grant categories above relate to nature of the charitable donations we receive.

Grantee Profile

Dr Ahmad Mustafa

 Egypt
 Oxford University
 PHD Islamic History
 1990
 Exhibition at The Royal College of Art

Read more »

Robert Hillenbrand

 UK
 Edinburgh
 1989
 Publication
 Islamic Architecture, Form, Function, and Meaning

Read more »

Ali Omar Ermes

 Libya
 Central Scool of Art
 1991
 Exhibition
 Art Exhibition at Ashmolean Museum, Oxford University

Read more »

British Museum

 UK
 Conservation
 Conservation Internship
 2010
 Barakat Trust conservation internship at the British Museum

Read more »

Mehreen Chida-Razvi

 Pakistan
 SOAS
 2014
 Travel Grant
 Jahanghir's funerary Complex in Lahore and comparative research

Read more »

Yasmin Kathrada

 India
 Prince of Wales Institute of Architecture, VITA
 Visual Islamic & Traditional Arts Depts
 2011
 Kufic calligraphy and hand etched glass

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Lamia Balfaraj

 France
 University of Aix Marseille
 Study Illustrated Persian manuscripts
 2011
 Study Illustrated Persian manuscripts of Sa'di at the British Library and Chester Beatty Library

Read more »

Paul Hepworth

 Turkey
 Religious Foundation, Ankara
 Conservation
 2009
 Conserve 17 Ottoman endowment deeds from the 16th-19th centuries : a collaborative art historical and conservation approach

Read more »

Mariam Rosser Owen

 UK
 Oxford University
 Post Doctoral Research
 2006
 Arts & Archaeology of the Islamic World

Read more »

Volunteer

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The Barakat Trust works on a wide range of projects, events, exhibitions and workshops across the world - get involved:

Please send your CV and a cover letter outlining your area of interest to: info@barakat.org

Media

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    Harpers Bazaar Arabia featuring Barakat Trustee

    Abir Dajani Tuqan takes Bazaar on a journey through a rich and textured life that includes an enviable collection of fashion moments More »

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    Art & Patronage - The Middle East by Thames & Hudson

    The Barakat Trust was featured in 'Art & Patronage The Middle East' published by Thames & Hudson. More »

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    Barakat Culture Vulture Kids Camp was featured in Arab London. More »

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    Arab News

    Arab News has consistently featured the growth and evolution of the Barakat Trust from its early years to the present day. More »

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    The Wells of Memory

    One of the first travelers in a century to walk through the Hejaz desert of Saudi Arabia, Paul Salopek encounters a fabled past of caravans and pilgrims, of empires come and gone. He encounters cultural preservationists including trustees of The Barakat Trust. More »

News & Events

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Converging Paths: Cultural Counters in Medieval Islam

date: 12 February 2019

To celebrate the inception of Converging Paths—a series of events aimed at building bridges with the......  More »
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Converging Paths: Joseph Tawadros - the Art of the Oud

date: 19 March 2019

Join us for an unforgettable evening in which traditional Arabic music meets jazz and classical in t......  More »
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Misr and Mosque: Architectural Splendour and Political Authority in Medieval Cairo

date: 19 July 2018

Misr and Mosque: Architectural Splendour and Political Authority in Medieval Cairo Illustrated talk ......  More »
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The Barakat Trust's Lectures with Leighton House Museum

date: Thursday 4 October 2018

The vast Muslim cemeteries of Cairo, known as the “City of the Dead”, were always also meant to be a......  More »