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Front cover of report

This research, funded by a British Academy Small Grant, involves developing and carrying out a survey examining public perceptions of Islam as a tradition and how these perceptions intersect with views of British Muslims as a population, as well as of other ethnic and religious minorities.

It is designed to respond to, and intervene in, debates about definitions of Islamophobia, which have centred on questions about whether anti-Muslim prejudice can be conceptualised as a form of racism, and whether policy responses to Islamophobia pose a threat to freedom of expression. The survey focuses on how, if at all, prejudices against Islam inform hostility toward Muslims and contribute to support for laws designed to curtail Muslims’ rights. The research will deepen scholarly and public understanding of what Islamophobia is and inform activities designed to counter Islamophobia and consolidate a definition of the term that can be used by public bodies.

This project’s final report, co-authored with Amy Unsworth of University College London, is now available and can be downloaded below. It highlights the pervasiveness of Islamophobia and shows that Islamophobia comes in two varieties, racial and religious, with the ‘religious’ form of Islamophobia being more common among the UK’s middle classes.

Dr Stephen Jones is a Lecturer in the Department of Theology and Religion and Deputy Director of the Institute for the STEMM in Culture and Society (ISTEMMiCS). He is a sociologist specialising in the study of Islam and Muslims in the UK and religious and non-religious publics’ perceptions of science. His research has focused on themes including Islam and liberalism; Islamophobia in contemporary Britain; Muslims’ perceptions of science; and religious diversity and inclusion in STEMM institutions and disciplines.