PIL: Our Year in Review As we near the end of this unprecedented year, we reflect on all of the Program in Islamic Law’s newly virtual world. We’ve been up to a lot! Going remote in March 2020 first gave us the opportunity to put on our creativity and innovation hats as we shifted online, expanding our many resources and programming to an even wider community. First, are the data science initiatives. The SHARIAsource Portal houses curated special collections and primary sources of Islamic law globally from scholar-editors and libraries; the Portal also anchors our digital humanities and data science initiatives that have taken off this year: Courts & Canons (CnC), StackLife 2.0, and CorpusBuilder. These three major new projects result from collaborations that we believe will revolutionize the field by facilitating new research and insights into Islamic law and history. We are now ready to embark on exciting next steps: opening up each project to the researchers, editors, and data scientists who wish to join in collaboration.
Then, there are several digital publications: This year alone, we have published dozens of stellar new works of scholarship on fully accessible online platforms. The Islamic Law Blog reaches tens of thousands of readers, features scholarly commentary from experts in the field, and features roundtables on topical issues such as conversations on pandemics in Islamic history. Other resources and publications include the new Field Guide to Islamic Law Online, the Journal of Islamic Law, and its related Forum on Brunei’s new Islamic Criminal Code.
Alongside the online digital tools and publications is robust programming that brings it all to life in a community of students and scholars coming together from all over the world. This year, our Islamic Law Speakers Series has shifted to a Zoom webinar format; the recorded videos are also posted on the PIL website and Vimeo channel with closed captioning for accessibility. For our students, we offer regular teaching and advising, convene a Digital Islamic Law Lab to explore the intersection of Islamic law and data science, and offer myriad opportunities for student fellowships, research assistantships, and to serve on the Journal editorial board. In short, there is a lot there, more to come, and plenty of ways to get involved or participate online. All of this has been achieved with the continuing support and engagement of both the local and broader global community members, such as yourself. Thank you, our work is made possible by you.
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