Islamic Religiosity

And the Challenges of Political Engagement and National Belonging in Multicultural, Western Cities


About the project

This is an Australian Research Council funded project being conducted by researchers at the Centre for Citizenship and Globalisation, Deakin University, Australia, and City University of New York (CUNY), United States.

The aim of the project is to understand the role that Islamic religious beliefs, rituals and faith-based community practices play in shaping experiences of belonging and citizenship in multicultural, western cities. In particular, the project aims to develop an understanding of the extent to which the emotional and spiritual aspects of Islamic religious practices encourage feelings of openness toward others and foster forms of civic and political engagement in multicultural cities.

The research will be conducted with Muslim community members in three western cities/nations: Melbourne, Australia; Detroit, USA and in France. Approximately 100 people in each city/nation will be asked to take part in face-to-face or online surveys which will identify what faith based, spiritual and cultural practices Muslims engage in, how often they engage in these activities, in what places they participate in these activities and the feelings they experience in these places. 5 focus groups (of 10-15 participants) and 50 individual interviews will also be conducted in each of the three cities to explore these themes in more depth, and to ascertain whether these practices contribute to feelings of national and local belonging, and/or encourage forms of civic and political engagement. Read more about the project here.


fethi mansouri

Alfred Deakin Professor Fethi Mansouri
Chief Investigator and Project Leader
T: +61 03 924 43914

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Alfred Deakin Professor Fethi Mansouri was appointed UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice in 2013. He holds a Deakin University research chair in migration and intercultural studies and is the Director of the strategic research Centre for Citizenship and Globalisation. Read full biography.

Bryan Turner

Professor Bryan Turner
Partner Investigator
T: +1 212-817-2056

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Bryan S. Turner is the Presidential Professor of Sociology at the Graduate Center at the City University of New York where he is Director of the Religion Committee and concurrently Professor of the Sociology of Religion at the Australian Catholic University (Melbourne). He is the general editor of the Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Social Theory, the founding editor of the Journal of Classical Sociology and Citizenship Studies. His recent publications include Religion and Modern Society (2011),The Sociology of Islam (2013) and The Religious and the Political (2013).

Michele Lobo

Dr Michele Lobo
Chief Investigator
T: +61 03 924 43872

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Michele Lobo is an Australian Research Council Early Career Research Fellow at the Centre for Citizenship and Globalisation, Deakin University. She is a social and cultural geographer whose research focuses on race, whiteness, ethno-religious diversity, intercultural encounter and belonging in suburbia. Read full biography.

Amelia Johns

Dr Amelia Johns
Research Fellow
T: +61 03 925 7030

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Amelia completed a PhD in Cultural Studies at the University of Melbourne in 2012. Her PhD explored experiences of intercultural contact, racism and belonging between groups of young people in multicultural, urban and suburban space. She is currently a Research Fellow at the Centre for Citizenship and Globalisation. Read full biography.

  Mr Irfan Yusuf
PhD Candidate
T: +61 03 924 46658

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Irfan is the recipient of the PhD scholarship for the ARC Discovery project Islamic Regiosity and the Challenges of Political Engagement and National Belonging in Multicultural, Western Cities. His research areas include jihad and a religious and political idea, Muslim youth, citizenship, national security and the merging jurisprudence of terrorism in Australia. In 2007, Irfan won the Iremonger Award for Public Issues Writing, leading to the publication of Once Were Radicals in 2009 by Allen & Unwin which dealt with young Australians exploring political Islam during the 1980's and '90's.​

How to get involved

If you are aged 18 or over, you are Muslim and you are a resident of either Melbourne (Australia), Detroit (USA), or France we would like to invite you to participate in the research study!

Here's how you can get involved: You can take part in our online survey.

You can participate in a focus group. Learn more here. You can take part in a one-on-one interview. Learn more here.

If you have taken the survey you can still take part in a focus group or interview. If you agree to participate in a focus group or interview you will receive a free movie voucher as a token of our appreciation! Contact Us To register your interest in participating please contact the research team at: E:, or Ph: +61 03 9251 7030 +61 03 9251 7030 , 0403 641 486 0403 641 486

Project news

We have finished conducting research in Melbourne and are currently conducting research in Detroit and France!

Complete our online survey, or contact us for details on how you can participate in the project

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