We have incorporated the “Islamicity Foundation,” a non-profit 501 (c) tax-exempt corporation in the U.S. state of Maryland to take ownership of Islamicity Indices, and have tasked it with the mission of bringing about peaceful and positive change in Muslim countries with Islamicity Indices as its instrument. The founding Board of Directors of the foundation will be enlarged and diversified as the initiative advances.
The foundation plans to raise a significant endowment (contributions tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law) to generate an income stream to support its mission. The foundation will manage the program to refine and update the Islamicity Indices and to design and implement a tentative work plan that includes:
– Convening of an inaugural conference to announce and kick off the program followed every five years with a conference to take stock, monitor progress and disseminate results
– Development of a five-year Plan of Action
– Further development and expansion of the Islamicity website to a new platform to allow interactive capabilities and include Facebook/Twitter/Instagram accounts for a connected global network
– Yearly improvement and updating of the Islamicity Indices and adoption of a third party audit plan for data and calculations
– Online collaboration with established local NGOs (or support for the creation of new NGOs) initially in a few Muslim countries (tentatively Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Qatar and Tunisia) to monitor developments and progress along each dimension of the indices and to issue papers that include policies and their implementation in order to establish effective institutions; with an increase in the number of countries covered each year (to cover most Muslim countries in about ten years)
– Issuing of white papers, on a few Muslim countries bi-annually delineating areas of progress and areas of shortfall and recommending helpful policies, and summary papers on country experiences
– Establishment of a Fellows Program with fellows invited from a handful of Muslim countries each year to engage in promoting indices and institution building in their countries.
Although the Islamicity Foundation has been organized as a stand-alone entity, in time and if appropriate, it could, with the approval of the board of directors, be merged into a world-class university as an independent program. This would afford the Foundation and its mission more visibility; it would facilitate fundraising activities; and most important, by teaching seminars on Islam and development and on Islamicity Indices, the Foundation could develop a cadre of young collaborators to better accomplish its mission around the world.