Friday, May 30, 2014


ISDEV is in receipt of yet another joyous news.

This time it is about the extended service bestowed on ISDEV Director, Professor Dr. Muhammad Syukri Salleh. Following his retirement on 31 July 2014, Prof. Syukri has been appointed as a contract Professor in Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) for a duration of three more years beginning 1 August 2014 till 31 July 2017. He has also been reappointed as ISDEV Director beginning 1 May 2014 till 31 December 2015.

Prof Syukri is the founder of the Centre for Islamic Development Management Studies, or ISDEV, founded in 1995 at the School of Social Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia. Initially known as the International Project for Islamic Political Economy (IPIPE), the name then evolved into Islamic Development Management Project (IDMP) in 1997, and finally, to its present name, Centre for Islamic Development Management Studies (ISDEV) in September 2005. Prof Syuki has been at the pinnacle of ISDEV position since it was known as IDMP.

Prof. Syukri delivering a Keynote Address at The 8th ISDEV International Graduate Workshop 2013 (left) and presenting a paper in Brunei Darussalam in December  2013 (right).

ISDEV owes its beginnings to Prof Syukri. With such an illustrious career and a formidable background behind him, it is timely to get up close and personal on this Oxford-don ISDEV Director. Prof. Syukri, as he is affectionately known, was born on 1st August 1954 in Kuala Besut, Terengganu to Salleh Abdullah and Lijah Awang Besar.

He is married to Marzizah Darus and they are blessed with four children: A`firah (Food Bio-Technology, Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia), Muhammad Qutham `Akif (Applied Physics, Universiti Sains Malaysia), Muhammad Taariq (Wood Technology, Universiti Teknologi MARA) and Ummu Habibah (Al-Mashoor Girls’ Secondary School).

Prof. Syukri's family : Wife (at the back) and Akif, Ummu, Taariq and A'firah (front, from left to right) during Eid-ul-Fitr 2013 in his hometown, Besut.

Prof. Syukri has been in service with USM since 1981. In 1991 he was conferred with the title Dr upon the completion of his D.Phil thesis (Islamic-Based Development) at the revered University of Oxford, UK. His D.Phil thesis received the thumbs up from his examiners as no corrections need to be made to his D.Phil thesis. Upon his return to USM he was appointed in 1992 the Chairman of the Development Studies Programme (now known as Development Planning and Management Programme), School of Social Sciences, USM. Two years later he became the Associate Professor of the said Programme until October 2000 where he received his full professorship, a title that he carries with him to this very day.

As the founding Director of ISDEV since 2005, Prof. Syukri led his team in establishing and coordinating the Master and PhD (Islamic Development Management by Research) and Master of Social Sciences (Islamic Development Management) Programme (Mixed Mode), School of Social Sciences, USM as well as chairing the Islamic Development Management Programme, School of Social Sciences, USM. Both positions he held until 2010.

International networking with (clockwise) Norwegian, Turkish, Qatarian and Tunisian scholars. 

Indeed it is not an easy task to juggle between the responsibilities of being a lecturer simultaneously a Director of a research centre that currently has over 100 registered postgraduate students. Yet Prof. Syukri is tireless and full of vigour especially in sharing his knowledge to both the RISDEV (Postgraduate Research Mode) and MISDEV (Postgraduate Mixed-Mode) students as well as to lead and chart the course for ISDEV to strive and achieve for excellence.

With USM Vice-Chancellor, signing MoU with Universitas Muhammadiyah Sumatera Utara (UMSU) and participating in The 6th International Conference on Islamic Development (ICID-6) in Medan, Indonesia, on 5 May 2014.

Although it is an opportune time for Prof Syukri to retire come 31st July this year, and thus sit on his laurels and bask in the glory in the achievements he has made thus far by spending time with his beloved family, nonetheless he has chosen to sacrifice all these sweet things in life to take the bitter sweet and strive further and continue to provide his services to ISDEV. This is commitment and perseverance of the highest degree in his hope to continue to share his knowledge and expertise to the younger generations as well as strive for the very best and bring glory to Islam.

Prof. Syukri with some of ISDEV fraternity.

Thanks to the efforts of all parties as well as the success achieved on the guidance of Prof Syukri the dedicated leader, finally as at 17 April 2014, ISDEV is now an independent Research Centre of Excellence. Following a one-year meticulous evaluation by a Special Committee chaired by USM's Vice-Chancellor Professor Dato' Omar Osman himself, and comprised of two USM Vice-Chancellors (Research & Innovation Professor Dato' Muhamad Jantan and Academic & International Affairs Professor Dato' Ahmad Shukri Mustapa Kamal), three Deans (Dr Nor Malina of the School of Social Sciences, Associate Professor Dr Hajar Abdul Rahim of the School of Humanities, and Professor Dr Fauziah Md. Taib of the School of Management), Mufti of the State of Penang SS Dato' Seri Haji Hassan bin Haji Ahmad, Professor Unggul (Distinguished) Tan Sri Dr Muhammad Kamal Hassan of International Islamic University Malaysia, and USM's Ombudsman Office Director and Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka's Chairman Board of Control Professor Dato' Seri Dr Md. Salleh bin Yaapar,  and later on an approval by USM's Senate and USM's Board of Governors, ISDEV finally received a Watikah from USM Legal Advisor on 14 May 2014. With this upgrade from a Virtual Centre previously to the current Research Centre of Excellence, ISDEV now operates independently from the School of Social Sciences.

With such joyous news, ISDEV is confident that Prof. Syukri will set new and higher goals for ISDEV members to meet and thus achieve greater success especially in the name of Islam. One of his main plan is to have an ISDEV's own complex to be built based on waqf, apart from driving ISDEV to be a National Reference Centre in three years and Regional Reference Centre in six years time.

ISDEV building at present
Future ISDEV Complex

Monday, May 26, 2014


As at 17 April 2014, ISDEV is now an independent Research Centre of Excellence. ISDEV received a 'Watikah' from USM Legal Advisor on 14 May 2014. With this upgrade from a Virtual Centre previously to the current Research Centre of Excellence, ISDEV now operates independently from the School of Social Sciences, its previous mother.

ISDEV Director, Prof. Muhammad Syukri Salleh (right) receiving the 'Watikah' from USM Legal Advisor,
Khairul Anuar Che Azmi (left)

Sunday, May 25, 2014


Say, [O Muhammad], "My Lord has ordered justice and that you maintain yourselves [in worship of Him] at every place [or time] of prostration, and invoke Him, sincere to Him in religion." Just as He originated you, you will return [to life]  (al-A'raaf, 7:29).

Friday, May 23, 2014


Deicy Natalia Karamoy presenting the findings of her PhD thesis

With the time allotted for almost two hours RISDEV (Postgraduate Research Mode) candidate, Deicy Natalia Karamoy took the opportunity wisely to present her PhD Research thesis on Pengelolaan Dana Masjid di Manado Menurut Undang-undang Indonesia (Administration of Masjid Fund in Manado according to the Laws of Indonesia). The proposal was presented in front of ISDEV lecturers and postgraduate students at the Conference Room of C06, School of Social Sciences, on 16 May 2014 which started at 9:30 am.

The serene atmosphere at C06

Scores of questions to her ensued her presentation which included questions fielded by Dr Mohd. Zaini who was the evaluator for her thesis. Other ISDEV members were also given the opportunity to ask and give their opinion as well as share information and knowledge that could be useful to her thesis. 

Deicy is all ears listening to a question posed by an ISDEV student. Seen here is (from right to left) Dr Mohd Zaini,
Dr Zakaria, Deicy and Dr Fadzila Azni 

After a detailed evaluation given by Dr Mohd Zaini, ISDEV lecturers unanimously agreed to give Deicy the endorsement to submit her PhD thesis after the suggested corrections and amendments are done. She was elated with joy when she heard the blissful announcement. She expressed her gratitude to her main supervisor Dr. Zahri Hamat as well as her co supervisor Dr. Fadzila Azni Ahmad for their guidance in helping her complete her PhD thesis.

Monday, May 19, 2014


Raziah Md. Tahir just moments before she was called in for her viva voce

Struggling for more than three years to juggle her responsibilities as a wife, a mother to her three children and a lecturer at Universiti Utara Malaysia as well as carrying out her duties as a RISDEV (Postgraduate Research Mode) student to complete her PhD thesis within the time frame given was well worth it. Finally on 16 May 2014, Raziah Md. Tahir can finally feel totally relieved as she had passed her viva-voce superbly.

Raziah's supporters and well wishers silently pray for her success while witnessing the examinations in session

Raziah who did her research on “Mekanisme Operasi Kredit Mikro Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia: Satu Analisis Daripada Perspektif Islam” (Operational Mechanism of Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia: An Analysis from the Islamic Perspective) had proven that all these trials and tribulations were well paid off when her board of examiners unanimously agreed to award her with a score of "1" simultaneously nominating her thesis to be eligible for the USM Excellent Thesis Award. 

Part of the panel of examiners. (From right to left), Dr Zaini, Prof Dr. Julaihi (Chairman), Dr Fadzila Azni,
Prof. Dr Abdullah @ Alwi and Encik Zaki.

The external examiner of the board of examiners was Professor Dr. Abdullah @ Alwi Hj.Hassan of Open University Malaysia. He asked various questions to Raziah but she managed to answer all the questions posed with such clarity and an air of humbled confidence. 

Raziah referring to her written thesis while answering the question posed by one of the examiners

The viva was chaired by Professor Dr. Julaihi Wahid from Architecture Department of the School of Housing, Building and Planning, USM. Dr. Fadzila Azni Ahmad represented the Dean of School of Social Sciences while Dr. Zahri Hamat and Dr. Zaini Abu Bakar were the internal examiners of the day. Also present were Professor Muhammad Syukri Salleh as Raziah’s main supervisor and Dr. Zakaria Bahari, her co supervisor. 

A very tense atmosphere while the viva voce was in session

After the result was announced, Raziah shared her recipe of success with tears of joy that perseverance and holding on tightly to Allah SWT with a never-lose-hope attitude is a motto that she held dearly throughout her PhD candidacy. She also added that success will not be generated if there is no guidance from the best teachers, that is, ISDEV lecturers. 

Her two beloved guru  (front), Prof. Syukri Salleh (left) and Dr Zakaria Bahari (right)

She also expressed her utmost gratitude to her main supervisor and co-supervisor, Prof. Muhammad Syukri Salleh and Dr. Zakaria Bahari respectively and hoped that her excellent result can be presented as a teacher's day gift dedicated to both of them specifically and other ISDEV lecturers generally. Her viva was on May 16 which coincides with Teachers’s Day celebrations in Malaysia. A befitting gift indeed to all ISDEV lecturers in conjunction with Teacher's day.

Congratulations to Raziah and Happy Teacher's Day to all ISDEV lecturers!

Sunday, May 18, 2014


Narrated AbuHurayrah: The Prophet (ﷺ) said: A man follows the religion of his friend; so each one should consider whom he makes his friend [Grade : Hasan (Al-Albani), Reference : Sunan Abi Dawud, No. 4833].

Thursday, May 15, 2014


Mohd. Syakir (front row) with his supporters

Mohd Syakir Mohd Rosdi (RISDEV), passed with flying colours in his viva-voce that was held on Thursday, 15 May 2014 at C06, Social Sciences Conference Room, USM.

Assoc. Prof. Dato' Dr. Mohd. Radzi (left) chairing the viva while Dr Zakaria (right) acts as the internal examiner 

He was evaluated by a board of examiners led by Associated Professor Dato' Dr. Mohd. Radzi Othman from the Islamic Studies Section, School of Humanities, USM.

A bird's eye view of the board of examiners. (From right to left) Dr Zaini, Prof. Syukri, Dr Fadzila Azni, Dr Zakaria, Assoc. Prof. Dato' Dr. Mohd. Radzi (chairperson), Dr Nor Hafizah and Prof. Dr. Badlihisham.

Other members of the board examiners council were Professor Dr. Badlihisham Mohd Nasir from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia who acted was the external examiner, Dr. Zakaria Bahari and Dr. Fadzila Azni Ahmad served as the internal examiners while Dr. Nor Hafizah Selamat represented the Dean of School of Social Sciences. In the meantime, Professor Muhammad Syukri Salleh and Dr. Zaini Abu Bakar as the main supervisor and co-supervisor respectively of Mohd. Syakir were also present.

Examination in session. Seen here Prof. Badihisham (left) is posing a question to Mohd. Syakir

Mohd Syakir answering the question with clarity and confidence

The board of examiners unanimously agreed to nominate Mohd Syakir's thesis on 'Tahaluf Siyasi dalam Ekonomi Politik Islam: Satu Kajian Teoritis" (Tahaluf Siyasi in Islamic Political Economics: A Theoretical Study) for USM Excellent Thesis Award.

A lighter moment - announcing the results. Seen here (from right) Dr Fadzila Azni, Dr Zakaria,
Assoc. Prof. Dato. Dr. Mohd. Radzi and Dr Nor Hafizah

Heartiest congratulations Mohd Syakir!

Monday, May 12, 2014


MEDAN, Indonesia 5 Mei 2014 - The transformation of a halal lifestyle has to start from the qalb (heart) which will then bring to the development of other matters in the lives of each person as well the whole ummah.

That was what was mentioned by USM Vice-Chancellor Profesor Dato’ Dr. Omar Osman in his Keynote Address at the Persidangan Antarabangsa Pembangunan Berteraskan Islam Ke-6 (The 6th International Conference on Islamic Development (ICID2014) organized by Universitas Muhammadiyah Sumatera Utara (UMSU) and the Centre for Islamic Development Management Studies (ISDEV) USM at Hotel Madani, Medan, Indonesia.

The Conference was attended by about 150 participants including both ISDEV and UMSU students.

Also in attendance of the Conference was ISDEV Director, Profesor Dr. Muhammad Syukri Salleh. Prof. Syukri also presented his paper on "Halal dari Perspektif Ekonomi" (Halal from the Economic Perspective). There were also three other papers presented that day. One was by Professor Dr. Nawir Yuslem from the State Islamic Institute entitled "Halal Field from the Perspective of Religion"; the other was by Professor Dr. Farid Wajdi M.Hum from UMSU who presented a paper entitled "Halal from the Perspective of Law" and the third was by Profesor Dr Basaruddin of LPPOM-MUI Sumatra Utara on Halal dari Perspektif Manajmen (Halal from the Management Perspective).

The Conference also saw USM Vice-Chancellor signing a Memorandum of Understanding with UMSU Rector, Dr. Agussani for academic collaborations, students' exchange and research on both sides.

USM Vice Chancellor was also garbed with "Ulos UMSU" by UMSU Rector as the highest accolade given by UMSU to USM.

Explaining the transformation of halal lifestyle in his Keynote Address, Prof Dato' Omar said that this effort is also closely related with the transformation of the others such as religion, economics, sciences, laws and consumerism. However the utmost important transformation starts with the qalb (heart).

Prof Dato' Omar added that the university as a knowledge institution needs to play the role in implementing the transformation that could lead to the shaping of a noble and well-mannered personality. This can bring about other positive changes whether in management or administration which will also bring about a change in economic, social and  community development holistically.

“As an example, the transformation of the qalb is needed through eating halal foods that shapes one's soul in obtaining guidance and blessings from Allah SWT, avoid various illness of the heart such as being grumpy and grouchy, hot tempered, egoistic and others" Prof Dato' Omar added further.

This will bring to other endeavours including the development of the halal industry which has the ability to influence a halal lifestyle within the community and benefit the Islamic ummah in the whole world that is estimated to be around 2.04 billion people, that covers 28.26% of humans in this world with the majority in the African continent, that is 581 million Muslims, 56 million in the European continent and some other continents recording a relatively large amount.

The University can also play a role in research and production of halal products according to Islamic tenets to enhance the available capability and capacity besides adding new knowledge and new products to meet market needs.

In fact it is not only closely related to the economy but also the values ​​of humanity based on halal lifestyle including culture as being done by many of today's popular culture.

"We do not want players who only think about profit only, we also do not want scientists who can only verify the halal status of a product but are not able to translate halal into the context of current time, not only optimize the benefits but are more focused on the importance of a halal lifestyle," said the Vice-Chancellor.

To achieve this, Omar suggested that there are two main aspects to be addressed in the context of qalb  management, first is Tazkiah al-nafs (self-purification process) and the second is the importance of the ongoing da'wah (propogation) efforts as a basis to build a halal lifestyle.

Last night, the Vice-Chancellor and the ISDEV entourage were also treated in a dinner attended by UMSU Rector Dr. Agussani, Head of Muhammadiyah Regional Leadership, Professor Dr. Asmuni, Deputy Rector and the top leadership of UMSU.

Prof. Dr. Dato' Omar also gave the subh tazkirah to participants.

Sunday, May 11, 2014


The example of those who spend their wealth in the way of Allah is like a seed (of grain) which grows seven spikes; in each spike is a hundred grains. And Allah multiplies (His reward) for whom He wills. And Allah is all-Encompassing and Knowing [al-Baqarah, 2:261].

Thursday, May 8, 2014


USM Vice Chancellor, Prof Dato' Dr. Omar Osman (left) with ISDEV Lecturers (from right to left) Prof Syukri, Dr Zahri, Dr. Zakaria and Dr Mohd Shukri

On 4 May 2014, 70 delegates from ISDEV left for an academic trip to Medan, Indonesia. They were there to participate in two academic gatherings as well as make a visit to several interesting places nearby. The trip was led by ISDEV Director, Professor Muhammad Syukri Salleh assisted by Deputy Director, Dr. Zakaria Bahari. Two other ISDEV lecturers, Dr. Mohd Shukri Hanapi and Dr. Zahri Hamat also joined in this academic trip. However what is made more special in this year's trip is the presence of USM Vice Chancellor, Professor Dato' Dr. Omar Osman with the ISDEV entourage. Prof. Dato’ Dr. Omar is scheduled to deliver a tazkirah after Subh and Maghrib congregational prayers for ISDEV delegates whilst there.

The sisters of ISDEV await patiently at the Penang International Airport for boarding

The five days academic trip included a two days academic gatherings jointly organized by ISDEV and Universitas Muhammadiyah Sumatera Utara (UMSU). The first is the 6th International Conference on Islamic Development (6th ICID) with the theme Transformasi Gaya Hidup Halal (Transformation of a Halal Lifestyle) followed by the Workshop Antarabangsa Pembangunan Berteraskan Islam Ke-7 (7th WAPI) scheduled for the next day. The 7th WAPI would see ISDEV students presenting their respective working papers.

Having a light moment together, Prof. Dato' Dr. Omar (second from right) with Prof. Syukri Salleh (right)

In both of these academic gatherings USM Vice Chancellor, Professor Dato’ Dr. Omar Osman would deliver the Keynote Address for the 6th ICID as well as the 7th WAPI. Besides the keynote address, Prof. Dato’ Dr. Omar is also expected to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between USM and UMSU for academic collaborations, students' exchange and researches between these two universities.

The remaining days would be filled with a visit to the Islamic traditional centres of learning (pondok agama or pasentren). ISDEV members are also expected to visit Berastagi to ponder upon and appreciate the nature as signs of Allah SWT creations.The delegates are scheduled to return on Friday and is expected to arrive in Malaysia at around 8.30pm, insya Allah