The Canada research Chair on Islam, Pluralism, and Globalization (CRC-IPG), at the University of Montreal aims at participating (to participate) to worldwide peace building through a research agenda focused on answering the following question: How, to what extent, and with which means, do the Muslim communities contribute to peace building, locally and globally ? These issues are addressed via four research axis.
Research Program (2010-2015)
The Canada Research Chair on Islam, Pluralism, and Globalization (CRC-IPG) aims to contribute to peacebuilding through its research agenda focused on answering the following question: How, to what extent, and with what means, have Muslim communities contributed to peacebuilding, locally and globally? To answer this broad question, the CRC-IPG focuses on four research axes.
Axis 1 – Observatory on Islam in Quebec
This first area of research suggests analyzing the dynamics between Muslims and non-Muslims in Quebec through studies centered on the social actors of yesterday and today: the persons, the communities and the institutions.
Section 1: Islam in contemporary Quebec
This section gathers various research projects aiming at furthering our comprehension of the roles of Quebecois Muslims in the social dynamics of XXIth century Quebec. These projects help uncover the variety of Muslim identities, communities and institutions, as well as in the relations between Muslims and non-Muslims, in terms both of their mutual perceptions as well as their spheres of cooperation, enhancing the quality of common-living (vivre-ensemble).
Section 2: History of Islam in Quebec
This section brings together various research projects aiming at furthering our comprehension of the role of Quebecois Muslims in the social dynamics of Quebec before the XXIth century.One project in particular focuses on examining the sixty year history of the Institute of Islamic Studies at McGill University, an avant-garde research center that envisioned a post-Orientalist approach in Islamic Studies carried out in the West.
Axis 2: Islam and Pluralism
Muslim cultures, inseparable from the processes through which the religion of Islam has been transmitted over time, are very old and diverse. This second axis includes research projects that study Islam’s internal plurality, past and present, in particular by distinguishing the multiple identity and power dynamics of intra-Islamic interactions.
Section 1: Plurality in Islam
This section gathers different projects focusing on the diversity (or plurality) of theological, political, ethnic and cultural (among others) positions that are found within Muslim communities historically and today.
Section 2: Pluralism in Islam
This section brings together different projects seeking a better understanding of the concept of pluralism in the writings of different Muslim thinkers, mainly in the modern/postmodern eras.
Section 3: Intra-Islamic Relations
This section includes research projects that study the spaces and mechanisms of transformation within contemporary Muslim dynamics (academia, governments, non-governmental organizations, traditional spiritual groups, etc.) in order to evaluate their impact on the quality of social cohesion in various Muslim communities worldwide.
Axis 3: Islam and Globalization
In today’s globalized world, the believers of different religions are bound to interact frequently, whether on an individual basis or in the name of religious institutions. A variety of reactions have unfolded, best compared on a large continuum: from openness towards others to radical exclusion of others. The contemporary study of Islam requires that this spectrum be analyzed as a whole, since its parts are in interaction with one another (through different degrees of attraction and opposition). The first extremity of this continuum leads directly to dialogue whereas the other extremity avoids it. In order to promote peacebuilding, the later necessitates a change that is only possible if we begin by first understanding better its complex internal mechanisms.
Section 1: Islam-Other(s) Dialogue
This section gathers the research projects on Muslim contemporary contributions to interreligious and inter-civilizational dialogue in light of identity construction and representation of the (principally) religious others. These projects study how our new era of globalization stimulates pluralistic approaches in international relations, such as the creation of the U.N. Alliance of Civilizations (2005) endorsed by over 100 countries.
Section 2: Islam and Radicalization
This section includes research projects that study processes of radicalization within and towards Islam, such as the rise in islamophobia and other interrelated forms of xenophobia.
Axis 4: InterWorldView Dialogue for Peacebuilding
This axis aims at theorizing the relation between Religious Studies and Peace Studies, while consolidating specific theories on peacebuilding and InterWorldView dialogue.
Section 1: Interdisciplinarity, Theory and Practice
Interdisciplinarity is at the heart of many theoretical and methodological debates in academia today. Part of these questions touch upon the links, utilitarian or not, between the university as the place of knowledge production and the multiple grounds of (re)production of know-how, competencies, and social skills. This section is interested in the intersection between these theoretical questions and their implications for various practices of social processes and transformations that can contribute to peacebuilding.
Section 2: InterWorldView Dialogue
InterWorldView dialogue is an approach in Applied Religious Studies, with precise theoretical and practical dimensions. It fosters better understanding of multiple identity and power dynamics, also known as “intersectionnality”. This section includes projects that study this approach and its applications in a variety of social sectors.
Section 3: Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding
This section gathers research projects that study specific cases of conflict resolution and peacebuilding in different parts of the world, especially where Muslims are involved in one way or another.