Dr. Syed Nazim Ali | Hamad Bin Khalifa University
Hamad Bin Khalifa University


Dr. Syed Nazim Ali

Dr. Syed Nazim Ali (PhD)

Director of the Research Division and Director of the Center for Islamic Economics and Finance (CIEF)
Center for Islamic Economics and Finance (CIEF)
Islamic Finance
College of Islamic Studies

  • Phone+974 44546992
  • Office locationC.04.017


Dr. Syed Nazim Ali is Research Professor and Director of the Research Division at CIS. He has spent the last 30 years spearheading interdisciplinary research in Islamic finance and faith-based initiatives in finance as well as community development. He was formerly the Founding Director of the Islamic Finance Project at Harvard University and Acting Executive Director of the Islamic Legal Studies program at Harvard Law School. 

Some of his most significant contributions to the field have been the I-BIR Databank (http://ibir.hbku.edu.qa/), the Islamic Finance Workshop in London at London School of Economics (2007–2017) and SOAS University of London (2018–Present), and the biennial Harvard University Forum on Islamic Finance (1997–Present), the proceedings of which are published under his editorship. 

Dr. Nazim Ali has previously been actively involved with the US Treasury, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, US Department of the Treasury, and central banks in other countries, working to improve understanding and  combat misconceptions about the Islamic finance industry. Most of his work focuses on social financing, Islamic finance, and Islamic information systems. 


Research Interests

  • Islamic Finance
  • Islamic Social Welfare
  • Ethical Finance
  • Bibliometrics
  • Scholarly Communication


Director of the Research Division


2017 – Present
  • Director

    Center for Islamic Economics and Finance (CIEF), CIS, HBKU

    2014 – Present
  • Director of Islamic Finance Program

    Harvard University

    1995 – 2014
  • Head of Research and Information Services

    University of Bahrain

    1984 – 1994
  • Director of Library

    King Faisal University, Al Hasa, Saudi Arabia

    1976 – 1983


PhD in Information Sciences

University of Strathclyde, Glasgow

  • MLS in Library Sciences

    Emporia State University, Kansas

  • BSc in Biology and Chemistry

    Osmania University, Hyderabad, India


Selected Publications


  • Ali, S.N. (Forthcoming). Fintech, Digital Currency and the Future of Islamic Finance in the GCC.

    Springer Nature.

  • Ali, S.N., Tariq, W., & Al Quradaghi, B.A. (Eds.). The Edinburgh Companion to Shari‘ah Governance in Islamic Finance.

    Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. ISBN: 978 147 4436007.

  • Ali, S.N., & Oseni, U.A. (2019). Fintech in Islamic Finance: Theory and Practice.

    London: Taylor & Francis. ISBN 978-1138494800.

  • Ali, S.N., & Nisar, S. (Eds.). (2016). Takaful and Islamic Cooperative Finance: Challenges and Opportunities.

    Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. ISBN 978-1-78536 335-1

  • Ali, S.N.; Oseni, U., & Nisar, S. (Eds.). (2014). Islamic Finance and Development.

    Cambridge: Harvard Law School, Islamic Finance Project. ISBN 0-9702835-8-X

  • Ali, S.N. (Ed.). (2012). Building Bridges across Financial Communities: The Global Financial Crisis, Social Responsibility, and Faith-Based Finance.

    Cambridge: Harvard Law School, Islamic Finance Project. ISBN 0-9702835-9-8

  • Ali, S.N. (Ed.). (2011). Shari‘a-Compliant Microfinance.

    London: Routledge. ISBN 978041578266-1

  • Ali, S.N. (Ed.). (2010). Islamic Finance: Innovation and Authenticity.

    Cambridge: Harvard Law School, Islamic Finance Project. ISBN 0-970-2835-7-1

  • Ali, S.N. (Ed.). (2007). Integrating Islamic Finance into the Mainstream: Regulation, Standardization, and Transparency.

    Cambridge: Harvard Law School, Islamic Finance Project. ISBN 0-9702835-6-3

  • Ali, S.N. (Ed.). (2005). Islamic Finance: Current Legal and Regulatory Issues.

    Cambridge: Harvard Law School, Islamic Finance Project. ISBN 0-9702835-5-5

  • Ali, S.N., & Ali, N.N. (1994). Information Sources on Islamic Banking and Economics 1980-90.

    London: Routledge. ISBN 0-7103-0486-2


  • Ali, S.N. (2012). Islamic Finance at Harvard University.

    In Belouafi, A., Belabes, A., & Trullols, C. (Eds.), Islamic Finance in Western Higher Education: Developments and Prospects. Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan. 209-228.


  • Ali, S.N. (2020). Big Data, Islamic Finance, and Sustainable Development Goals.

    King Abdulaziz University: Islamic Economics. 33(1). 83-90. DOI:10.4197

  • Ali, S.N., & Al-Quradaghi, B. (2019). Publishing Islamic Economics & Finance Research: Polemics, Perceptions and Prospects.

    International Journal of Islamic and Middle Eastern Finance and Management, 12(3). 346-367.

  • Ali, S.N. (2017). Building Trust in Islamic Finance Products and Services.

    Society and Business Review, 12(3). 356-372.

  • Ali, S.N. (2017). Moving Towards Community Driven Islamic Finance.

    Journal of Islamic Business and Management, 7(1). 11-27.

  • Ali, S.N., & Nu’Man, R. (2016). Islamic Economics and Finance Education: Consensus on Reform.

    Journal of Islamic Economics, Banking and Finance, 12(3).75-97.

  • Ali, S.N. & Nisar, S. (2016). The Significance of Faith-based Ethical Principles in Responding to the Recurring Financial Crises.

    Journal of Islamic Banking and Finance, 33(4). 24-35.

  • Ali, S.N., Rahman, S.M., & Ali, S.S. (2016). Financing Sovereign Developmental Activities Through Non-Interest Bearing Instruments.

    Journal of Islamic Finance, 5(1). 26-44.

  • Ali, S.N., & Syed, A. (2010). Post-9/11 Perceptions of Islamic Finance.

    International Research Journal of Finance and Economics, 39. 27-39.

  • Ali, S.N., & Rehman, A. (2008). Islamic Finance: The New Global Player.

    Harvard Business Review. 43.

  • Ali, S.N. (2008). Islamic Finance and Economics as Reflected in Research and Publications.

    Review of Islamic Economics, 12(1). 151-168.


  • Ali, S.N. (2008). A Roadmap for Making Islamic Finance Sources More Accessible: The Role of Secondary Services in the Dissemination of Research.

    In Proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Islamic Economics and Finance Conference Papers. Jeddah: King Abdulaziz University. 225-34.