Human Capital Need in Islamic Finance Education: A Case of Australia
The main objective of this paper is to demonstrate training requirement for human capital needed in the emerging field of Islamic Finance (IF) industry in Australisian region. It proposes the structure of the curriculum which can build bridges among multi-culture/faith communities based on sound understanding of finance and Shariah in the western democratic societies where Muslims are in minorities. It presents a case study of La Trobe University’s pioneering Master of Islamic Banking and Finance (MIBF) degree structure and an online six week’s e-learning short course on Islamic Finance Professional Development (IFPD) jointly with Ethica Institute in UAE. The course is then linked with various components of the professional bodies, like Masters’ in professional accounting (MPA), financial analysis (MFA), and MBA (restricted to electives only), CFA, GARP and then extension to PhD level education in IF. The paper addresses various aspects of IF education such as the significance of knowledge, curriculum design, procedures in acquiring support from within the University academic community, challenges in marketing the course and the needed research backing. It also reviews some illustrating statistics to support the need for the course in Australasian region and highlight statistical finding of our MIBF alumni. The paper closes with final remarks and recommendations to industry and policy makers.
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