International Society for Islamic Legal Studies (ISILS)


International Society for Islamic Legal Studies (ISILS)

Incorporated in 2004, ISILS is an international, nonprofit, and nonpolitical organization that aims to encourage scholarship on and to foster communication about Islamic law and related subjects. ISILS’s primary focus is the organization and convening of the Islamic Legal Studies (ILS) conferences, which are held triennially. ISILS is open to all who are interested in the academic study of Islamic law.

The International Society for Islamic Legal Studies (ISILS) was conceived in 2003, in Murcia, Spain, during the convening of the Fourth International Conference on Islamic Legal Studies (ILS). A group of participants came together to take steps to establish a more official body for the planning and organizing of the triennial conference that began as the Joseph Schacht Conference on Theory and Practice in Leiden and Amsterdam in the Netherlands, in 1994.

Since that first conference, organized to attract submissions for the newly launched journal Islamic Law and Society, three more conferences had been organized by the same founding parents of the Leiden/Amsterdam conference, who were beginning to feel that they should not be monopolizing the choice of conference theme and location.

In May 2004, articles of organization were filed with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, effectively incorporating the International Society for Islamic Legal Studies. The statutory articles can be found in the Corporate Database (fill in the society’s name) at:

As of June 2018 the membership has grown to 92 members, from 47 at the time of the first Business Meeting in 2006.

ILS Conferences

• IX ILS Conference: Helsinki and Tampere, Finland (2018)
• VIII ILS Conference: Islamic Law and Ethics (2015)
• VII ILS Conference: Islamic Law and the State (2012)
• VI ILS Conference Program (2009)


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