WISE Shura Council

The Shura Council is generating a space in which Muslim women can actively dialogue and collaborate on pressing issues of social justice, in order to articulate an ethical and egalitarian Islam. Comprised of Muslim women scholars and activists, the Council aims to promote equality for Muslim women by conducting research, providing Islamic positions on relevant issues, and disseminating this information to the media and WISE network. Operating under the framework of justice, the WISE Shura Council is creating a crucial space for scholarship and activism that contributes to Muslim women’s struggle for justice and a broad vision of acting in public spaces.

Drawing upon its members’ expertise in both Islamic jurisprudence and fields like history, political science, theology, sociology and the arts, the Council will issue informed and religiously-grounded opinions on controversial issues of particular relevance to Muslim women in their personal, familial and societal lives. By advocating a constructive conception of women’s status, rights and responsibilities, these opinions will function as legitimate alternatives to oppressive religious arguments. Thus, the Council is providing members of the WISE community, as well as Muslims and non-Muslims worldwide, with comprehensive information and vital analysis from Islamic law and other fields of scholarship, in addition to proposing strategies for affecting positive and sound change.

Vision: To generate a space in which Muslim women actively dialogue, debate, and collaborate on pressing issues of social justice, in order to articulate an ethical and egalitarian Islam.

Mission: To serve as a global and inclusive council of Muslim women scholars, activists, and specialists that will:

  • Engage with issues of social injustice against Muslim women through critical review and interpretations of legal and religious texts and practices;
  • Disseminate these interpretations around the world and, in doing so, re-establish women’s authority in religious discourse;
  • As supported by the pluralism inherent in Islam, to enable women to make dignified and autonomous choices;
  • Develop a variety of training programs, both short-term intensive and long-term, in order to equip women with expertise in the Islamic legal and ethical traditions.


The Shura Council will fulfill four primary needs for the WISE community, Muslim women, and society at large:

  1. Educate women and men, Muslim and non-Muslim, on the principles of gender equality and social, economic, and political justice in Islam.
  2. Challenge unjust interpretations of the law and Islam’s primary texts by offering analyses that are simultaneously faithful to Islamic jurisprudence and a vision of women’s empowerment.
  3. Employ extensive expertise in the Islamic legal traditions, humanities and social sciences, and local contexts, in order to connect and apply the Islamic legal traditions to the most pressing issues facing Muslim women today and develop strategies for creating constructive social change.
  4. Promote Council positions and members’ scholarship through the global media.


  • Sophia Abdi Noor, Kenya
  • Jamila Afghani, Afghanistan
  • Ziakha Ahmed, United Kingdom
  • Laisa Alamima, Philippines
  • Fawziah al-Hani, Saudi Arabia
  • Nadia al-Sakkaf, Yemen
  • Sumbul Ali-Karamali, United States
  • Laila al-Zwaini, Netherlands
  • Gonca Aydin, Germany
  • Laleh Bakhtiar, United States
  • Amina Rasul Bernado, Philippines
  • Ayesha S. Chaudhry, Canada
  • Sheeba Aslam Fehmi, India
  • Mufuliat Fijabi, Nigeria
  • Naish Hasan, India
  • Moliah Hashim, Singapore
  • Samah Helmy, Egypt
  • Ivana Hrdlickova, Czech Republic
  • Sidra Humayun, Pakistan
  • Fatma Hyder, Kenya
  • Afra Jalabi, Canada
  • Naziema Jappie, South Africa
  • Ayisha Jeffries, United States
  • Zeinaba Kane, Senegal
  • Adriana Kaplan, Spain
  • Farheen Kapra, India
  • Daisy Khan, United States
  • Zakia Mahasa, United States
  • Santanina Rasul, Philippines
  • Nevin Reda, Canada
  • Sabeeha Rehman, United States
  • Fatima Sadiqi, Morocco
  • Tayyibah Taylor, United States
  • Homayra Ziad, United States