Akbar S. Ahmed

History of Muslims in Europe

Image source: School of Oriental & African Studies, University of London

Image license: CC BY 3.0

Year of Birth




Field of Knowledge




Akbar Salahuddin Ahmed, (born. 15 January 1943) is a Pakistani-American academic, author, poet, playwright, filmmaker and former diplomat. He currently holds the Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Studies and is Professor of International Relations at the American University in Washington, D.C. A former Pakistani High Commissioner to the UK and Ireland, Ahmed was a member of the Civil Service of Pakistan and served as Political Agent in South Waziristan Agency and Commissioner in Baluchistan. He also served as the Iqbal Fellow (Chair of Pakistan Studies) at the University of Cambridge as well as holding teaching positions at Harvard, Princeton, and the U.S. Naval Academy. An anthropologist and scholar of Islam, he received his PhD from the School of Oriental and African Studies in London. He has been called “the world’s leading authority on contemporary Islam” by the BBC.Ahmed received the Tamgha-i-Imtiaz (Medal of Excellence) and Sitara-i-Imtiaz (Star of Excellence) from the Pakistani government for academic distinction and the Sir Percy Sykes Memorial Medal by the Royal Society for Asian Affairs in London. He was also awarded the inaugural Purpose Prize in 2006 alongside Judea Pearl and is frequently named in the annual book, The Muslim 500: The World’s 500 Most Influential Muslims, and was named a 2015 Global Thought Leader by The World Post and the Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute.


Ranking History 2018 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012