His main field of interest is related to the notion of modernities, particularly the possibility of non-Western models for modernities, seen from the perspective of continuous social and cultural transformation. Other fields of interest include knowledge construction in contemporary Muslim societies and comparative cultural studies.

He has previously done work on the Japanese outlook on Asia, globalisation and public spaces. His graduate studies were conducted in France and Canada in the fields of philosophy and cultural studies. He is a member of the Global Reconciliation Network and has been a member of the Master Jury and of the Steering Committee of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture. Sadria teaches the courses 'The Sacred Across Cultures' and 'Knowledge Construction' as part of the Institute’s MA in Muslim Cultures.

Contact Details

Email address: modjtaba.sadria@yahoo.co.uk
Telephone: 020 7907 1058

Research Projects

Knowledge Construction. Research which addresses the possibility of and need for a questioning of present trends in knowledge construction that answer primarily to political and economic spheres while negotiating social needs.

Cities in Muslim Societies. From the perspective of the built, material and lived environment, research which explores the concept of ‘value system transfer’ and the interaction between the built environment and the 'lived' environment.

Plurality of Modernities. The plurality of modernities as a topic of research looks critically at the theories of modernity, and considers that there is validity for the existence of a plurality of modernities. This framework helps to grasp the emergence of practices relevant to modernity in Muslim contexts. 

Production and Reproduction of Poverty. Decades of development work have not succeeded in alleviating poverty. On the contrary, it is possible to draw a cause and effect relationship between contemporary models of development and the rise of poverty. 

Study Groups

Professor Sadria coordinates three study groups:

Central Asia Study Group. This study group is intended as an inter-institutional, multi-disciplinary, collaborative cluster for academics, researchers, students and others with an interest in Central Asia. The Group will look at a range of issues relating to social and cultural transformations in this region, in particular, focusing on mechanisms of peoples’ empowerment in these societies. The Central Asia Study Group blog provides further information about its activities. The Group includes members from a range of institutions, including the School of Oriental and African Studies and the Institute of Ismaili Studies.

Cities Study Group. The aim of this interdisciplinary group is to explore new approaches to the study of change in 21st century cities from the perspective of the lived and the built environment. The central concern of the group is to investigate the interrelationship between the way people live in and experience the city and the urban or built environment. The notion of a multitude of urbanities is used to explore this relationship. The Cities Study Group blog provides additional information on its activities.

Human Autonomy in Muslim Thought Study Group. This group is a multi-disciplinary, collaborative group for academics, researchers, students and others with an interest in the concept of human autonomy in Muslim thought. The core concern of the group is to study culturally-specific ways that ‘autonomy’ has been recognised and conceptualised in the work of Muslim thinkers, and explore alternatives to contemporary articulations of autonomy. Activities include monthly meetings and a blog site.


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