Professor the Baroness Haleh Afshar

Profile

Biography

Haleh Afshar (BA York, PhD University of Cambridge) teaches Politics and Women's Studies at the University of York and serves as a Crossbench Peer in the House of Lords. In 2005 she was awarded an OBE for services to equal opportunities. She is also the Visiting Professor of Islamic Law at the Faculté Internationale de Droit Comparée at Strasbourg. She was born and raised in Iran where she worked as a journalist and a civil servant. She has served as the Chair for the British Association of Middle Eastern Studies and Chair of United Nation Association's International Services. For seven years she served as Deputy Chair of the British Council's Gender and Development Task Force. She has also served with the Advisory Group of the Cabinet Offices Women's Unit to work on raising gender awareness amongst civil servants who adjudicate on applications for asylum from women. She served as a member of Nuffield Council on bioethics' working group on ethics and Pharmacogenetics. In 2008 she was appointed to serve as a Commissioner on Women's National Commission.She has written two and edited/co-edited 13 books on questions relating to women and development; as well as producing books on Islam and feminisms Iranian politics and women in later years.

Afshar serves on the editorial boards of 10 academic journals and has been a member of the advisory group to aid the development of an Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). Member of the Joseph Rowntree Foundation research project on 'Muslims and Community Cohesion in Britain'. Member of the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Working Group on religion and ethnicity 2006. Member of the advisory group the AHRC and ESRC set up to take forward the development of a joint research programme tackling the issues of religion, belief and society 2006. Member of the Advisory Group for the 'Integration of female immigrants in labour and society' research programme, part of the 6th framework programme of the European Commission 2006-8. She was invited to act as an ESRC representative on the British Academy and ESRC'sVisiting Fellowships Scheme Panel for the Middle-East 2007 and 2008.

Publications

Selected publications

  • 1998 Islam and Feminisms, an Iranian case study Macmillan
  • 2008 Women in Later Life; Exploring Race and Ethnicity, with Mary Maynard, Myfanwy Franks and Sharon Wray, Open University Press
  • 1999 with Stephanie Barrientos Women and Globalization and Fragmentation in the Developing World, Macmillan
  • 2004 with Deborah Eade Development, Women, and War Oxfam publication
  • 2005 "Behind the Veil" in Women and Islam: Critical Concepts in Sociology, edited by Haideh Moghissi. London : Routledge "Muslim women and feminisms: illustrations from Iran" Social Compass 54 (3)
  • 2007 "Can I see your hair? Choice, agency and attitudes: the dilemma of faith and feminism for Muslim women who cover" Ethnic and Racial Studies, Volume 31, Issue 2 February 2008
  • 2006 "Democracy and Islam" pamphlet launched by the Hansard Society as the first in the Hansard Democracy Series.

Research

Projects

  • Jodie Mellor - Muslim and non muslim women and tertiary education
  • Kate MacLean - Micro financing in Bolivia
  • Jyothsna Belliappa - Professional women in India
  • Anna Piela - Muslim women and web based information
  • Sanja Kurd - Muslim women in Bosnia
  • Hiranmayee Mishra - Women and the Panchayat in India
  • Tina Eftekhar - The particiption of young women and girls in Iranian politics

Supervision

Haleh has supervised and continues to supervise research students on the following topics:
  • Women and political participation,
  • Women in conflict and post conflict zones
  • Women and citizenship
  • Women and violence
  • Islam and politics
  • Islam and minority status in the UK
  • "Islamic fundamentalism"

External activities

Memberships

  • Appointed to serve as a crossbencher at the House of Lords 2007
  • OBE for services to equal opportunities 2005
  • Founder member and Chair, Muslim Women's Network (advising Minister for Women) since 2002
  • Chair and facilitator of the Listening to Women exercise funded by the Home Office and conducted by the Muslim Women's Network and the National Commission for Women 2005-2006
  • Adviser to various parts of Government on public policy on Muslim women and Islamic law; speaker on various media on the Muslim community.
  • Member of Nuffield Council on bioethics' working group on ethics and pharmacogenetics, 2002
  • Invited by the Hansard Society to launch its Democracy Series with a pamphlet on “Democracy and Islam” 2006
  • Invited to serve as a Commissioner on UK Drug Policy Commission.  2006
  • Appointed to serve as a member of Education Honours Committee 2007
  • Invited to evaluate the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD)'s activities for "Beijing plus 10", 2007
  • Invited to serve as a member of the jury national de recrutement d'agrégation de science politique en France, 2008
  • Appointed to serve as a Commissioner on Women's National Commission 2008
  • Member of the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Working Group on religion and ethnicity 2006
  • Member of the advisory group the AHRC and ESRC set up to take forward the development of a joint research programme tackling the issues of religion, belief and society 2006
  • Member of the Advisory Group for the 'Integration of female immigrants in labour and society' research programme, part of the 6th framework programme of the European Commission 2006-8
  • Invited to serve as a Commissioner on UK Drug Policy Commission, 2007
  • Board member of British Edutrust Foundation 2007
  • Invited to act as an ESRC representative on the British Academy and ESRC’s Visiting Fellowships Scheme Panel for the Middle-East 2007 and 2008
  • Member of Hazel Blears' Academics and Theologians Roundtable 2007
  • Invited to serve as Specialist Advisor to sub-panel 48, Middle Eastern and African Studies, in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE)
Haleh Afshar

Contact details

Prof. Haleh Afshar
Department of Politics
University of York
Heslington
York
YO10 5DD