Tony Blair Institute for Global Change


Usama Hasan

Quilliam, Senior Researcher; Imam and Scholar of Islam


Dr Usama Hasan is Senior Researcher at Quilliam and was a founding advisor to the organisation in 2008. As a teenager Usama became a radical salafi activist and, whilst still a Cambridge undergraduate, briefly took part (1990-1) in the 'Jihad' against Communist forces in Afghanistan. However following the 7/7 bombings in London, Usama took it upon himself to start campaigning against extremism and for religious reform within Muslim circles.

Fluent in English, Urdu and Arabic, Dr Usama completed memorizing the entire Qur'an by the age of 11. He has served as a part-time imam since his teens and is a certified transmitter of the Qur'an and Hadith scriptures and has translated a number of Islamic texts into English, including The Islamic Foundation's "Way of the Prophet" (2009).

Before joining Quilliam, Dr Usama was a Senior Lecturer in Engineering at Middlesex University, 2003-2012. He holds a PhD, MSc & MA in Physics and Artificial Intelligence from the Universities of Cambridge & London and is a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society.

As Quilliam Senior Researcher, Dr Usama engages in ongoing reform, outreach and media work. He aims to address key questions on gender rights, minority rights, personal freedoms, penal codes; seeking to harmonise tradition and reason, faith and science, and developing the Sharia in keeping with the original Prophetic spirit of mercy, and away from rigid ritualism

Usama is regularly featured on international television channels, including BBC Hardtalk, CNN , ITN, Sky News, Channel 4, MBC, ARY, Al-Jazeera and has also written various columns for The Times (paywall), The Guardian, The Telegraph and the Washington Post.

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