Islamism is a modern term used to describe the ideology that Islam can be used as a political system. This belief, as we see it today in Egypt, Palestine, Lebanon, Turkey and Morocco, is often a reaction to loss of identity and security in a neo-colonial world.

Ali Asani is Professor of Indo-Muslim and Islamic Religion and Cultures and Director of the Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Islamic Studies Program at Harvard University. A scholar of Islam in South Asia, Prof Asani's research focuses on Shia and Sufi devotional traditions in the region. In addition, he is interested in popular or folk forms of Muslim devotional life, Muslim communities in the West and the role of the arts in promoting religious literacy.

Jocelyn Cesari is Senior Research Fellow at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs at Georgetown University and directs the Islam in the West Program at Harvard University. She is the founder of Islamopedia Online, which maps the global field of Islam and Governance and of which is the clearing house for resources on Muslims and Islam in Europe and North America. Her most recent books are "The Awakening of Muslim Democracy: Religion, Modernity and the State and "Why the West Fears Islam: Exploration of Muslim in Liberal Democracies."

Eli Clifton is a reporting fellow with The Investigative Fund at The Nation Institute who focuses on money in politics and US foreign policy. Clifton is a co-author of the Center for American Progress's report "Fear Inc.: The Roots Of the Islamophobia Network In America," which tracked millions of dollars of funding for Islamophobic organizations in the U.S.

Matthew Duss is a Policy Analyst at American Progress, where his work focuses on U.S. national security policy in the Middle East, with a concentration on Iran and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Duss’ work also focuses on the issue of Islamophobia in the United States. He is a co-author of the Center’s 2011 report, “Fear, Inc: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America,” which tracked millions of dollars of funding for Islamophobic organizations in the U.S.

Haroon Moghul is a Senior Correspondent at Religion Dispatches and Senior Editor at The Islamic Monthly. He is a Ph.D. candidate at Columbia University, focusing on 'Allama Muhammad Iqbal's concept of reconstruction; his research more broadly includes Islam in India and Islamic networks across the greater Indian Ocean and West Asian regions. Moghul is also the author of two novels – "My First Police State" and "The Order of Light."

Hussein Rashid is currently a faculty member at Hofstra University and Associate Editor at Religion Dispatches. He is the convener of islamicate and a contributor to Talk Islam and AltMuslimah. He received an MA and PhD from Harvard’s Near Eastern Languages and Cultures. His dissertation focused on the role of music as a means of integration amongst South Asian immigrants to the US and the UK. His larger research interest is the representation and self-representation of Muslims in America. He is currently expanding his research to include graphic novels and the Muslim-American blogistan.

Omid Safi is an Iranian-American Professor of Islamic Studies at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, where he specializes in Islamic mysticism (Sufism), contemporary Islamic thought and medieval Islamic history. He has served on the board of the Pluralism project at Harvard University and is the co-chair for the Islamic Mysticism Group at the American Academy of Religion. He is also the author of Progressive Muslims, which contains a diverse collection of essays by and about Muslims committed to social justice and pluralism.