Friday, June 25, 2010


At the entrance of the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies

Arrived Oxford, UK from Jeddah on Friday morning 18 June 2010. Reported for duty at Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies (OCIS) on Monday 21 June 2010 as a Visiting Fellow, undertaking a research on "Conceptualising Islamic Project Management".

Remet old friends at the Centre: Dr Farhan Nizami (OCIS Director), Dr David Browning (OCIS Registrar and my previous D.Phil supervisor), and Dr Jamel Qureshi (in-charge of the Journal of Islamic Studies who revised the English of my D.Phil thesis).

Also get to know new friends: the Malaysian Dr Afifi al-Makiti (OCIS Fellow and lecturer of the Oxford University's Department of Theology)  and Pakistani Prof Mohammed Taib (OCIS Fellow).

At the weekly lunch of the Senior Common Room members the  next day, met many more new friends whom I did not as yet really remember their names. Dr Farhan introduced me to them as the first student of the Oxford University enrolled through the Centre. I recalled, on my arrival at OCIS in 1986, its office was at the living room of Dr Farhan's house, with only a clerk named Harfiyah, a British Muslim. The typewriter used by Harfiyah, said Dr Farhan, was borrowed from Dr David Browning. After Dr Farhan's wife giving birth to his child, people telephoning to OCIS were wondering why there was sound of child crying on the background.

Not long after that, OCIS moved to the "Wooden Hut" besides Dr Farhan's house. And not long after I left Oxford in 1991, OCIS has its own present 5-storey office at George Street in the heart of the city of Oxford. In two years time, expectedly in 2012, OCIS will move to its own huge building at Marston Road, now in its final touch, not far from my present Clevedon House accommodation on the same street.

If OCIS could progress in such a way, why not ISDEV?