One of the key objectives of this conference was to help fill the gap between academic expertise and public knowledge of cross-cultural relations involving Muslims. Participants broke into discussion groups around five themes to pinpoint new, more inclusive narratives to reshape the conversation about intercultural relations. They explored areas of research and partnerships among institutions in the US, Europe, the Middle East and North Africa that can help shed light on deep connections between Muslim and non-Muslim societies in the fields of culture, the arts, humanities and science. Rounding out these discussions, participants had the opportunity to work with media professionals to develop effective messaging and gain practical skills to improve their engagement with online, print and broadcast media.
The essays compiled in the resulting series of e-books reflect the ideas that participants arrived at the conference with as well as the conversations that ensued throughout its three days. We have produced four books covering each of the themes undertaken at Cambridge: The Power of Words and Images; Islam, Knowledge and Innovation; Citizenship and Identity; and Religion, Politics and the Public Sphere.