Shaheen Ali has an LLB (Peshawar), LLM (Hull), MA (Peshawar) and PhD (Hull) and has written extensively in the field of Islamic law, human rights, women and child rights. She was formerly Professor of Law University of Peshawar, Pakistan for twenty-five years and Director Women’s Study Centre at the same university. Shaheen served on the National Commission of Inquiry on Women as well as the Prime Minister’s Consultative Committee on Women in Pakistan. She also served as the first woman cabinet Minister for Health, Population Welfare and Women’s Development in the Government of the Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan (formerly known as the North west Frontier Province) and the first Chair of the National Commission on the Status of Women of Pakistan. Shaheen has consulted with a range of national and international organisations including the British Council, DFID, NORAD, UNICEF, UNIFEM, UNDP to name a few, as well as providing expert legal opinions in the area of Islamic law in UK and US courts. She was also a member of the British Council Task Force on Gender and Development and a founder member and Co-ordinator of the South Asian Research network on Gender, Law and Governance (SARN). Shaheen is joint editor (with Professors Javaid Rehman and Amir Majid) of the Journal of Islamic State Practices in International Law and member of the advisory board of the Journal of Gender Studies.
Her research lies at the intersection of Islamic law, women’s rights, children’s rights and international human rights law. She has published extensively in these areas and has engaged in empirical research in the field of Islamic criminal justice where she investigated thousands of cases applying the Hudood laws of Pakistan as well as those in the Shari’a Councils in Britain.
Publications from research of Islamic Criminal Justice
- S S Ali, ‘Authority and Authenticity; Sharia Councils, Muslim women’s rights and the English Courts’ (2013) Vol 25(2) Child and Family Law Quarterly pp. 113-137.
- S S Ali, ‘Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea’: Sharia Councils and Muslim Women’s Rights in the British Muslim Diaspora in S S Ali, Modern Challenges to Islamic Law (2016) Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Other publications employing empirical research:
- S S Ali, ‘Internet Fatawa: Challenging Tradition and Modernity in Women and Gender Issues’ in S S Ali, Modern Challenges to Islamic Law (2016) Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- S S Ali, ‘From Muslim Migrants to Muslim Citizens: Islamic law and Muslims in a Multi-faith Britain’ in Griffiths-Jones, R. (ed.) Islam in English Law. Rights and Responsibilities and the Role of Shari’a, (2012) Cambridge University Press pp. 157-175.
- “Behind the Cyberspace Veil: Online Fatwas on Women’s Family Rights” in Hellum, A. Ali, S. S. and Griffiths, A. (eds.) From Transnational Relations to Transnational Laws: Northern European Law at the Crossroads (2010) Ashgate Publishing, pp. 125-146.
- ‘Interpretative Strategies for Women’s Human Rights in a Plural Legal Framework: Exploring Judicial and State Responses to Hudood laws in Pakistan’ in Anne Hellum, Shaheen Sardar Ali, Julie Stewart & Amy Tsanga (eds.) Human Rights, Plural Legalities and Gendered Realities: Paths are Made by Walking. (2006) Harare: Weaver Books. Chapter 15