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Spring 2012- Islamic Finance and Investment in the International Markets

The Spring 2012 Global Research Seminar led by Professors Michael Knoll and Michael McMillen explored contemporary Islamic finance from a transactional vantage, with particular emphasis on structuring financial transactions and products. Islamic finance is the fastest growing segment of the financial market. Yet in spite of its growing importance as a source of capital, Islamic finance is largely ignored in Western universities.  To the best of our knowledge, this course was the first interdisciplinary and cross-border Islamic finance course offered in the United States. Over the spring break, students spent seven days in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia where they met with the public and private sector entities who are designing, implementing and overseeing the financial services products that will shape Islamic finance for decades to come.  Since the earliest days of modern Islamic finance, Malaysia has played a leading role. Its firms and regulators have collaborated to develop the most progressive tools, building important bridges between conventional and Islamic investors.