Mar 13, 2015
Funding of Islamic institutions by foreign government entities has received considerable attention in the Netherlands in recent years. Concerns have risen over the possibility that these donations may be granted under certain conditions, for example in return for influence on the daily management or religious practicing. It is difficult to say whether these concerns are justified, as little is known about size and nature of foreign funding of religious institutions. The Research and Documentation Centre (WODC) has commissioned a study to assess the feasibility of conducting a full analysis of the size and scope of foreign funding of Islamic institutions in the Netherlands and the possible conditions under which funding may be provided. This document reports on the results of that feasibility study.
RAND Europe systematically and rigorously surveyed the available information for a sample of institutions in the Netherlands (39 of a purported 450). Using public data and confidential information made available to us, some examples of foreign funding as reported in the media could be verified for individual institutions in this sample. However, we expect it will be legally and practically complicated and very resource intensive to carry out a comprehensive assessment of all ca. 450 Islamic institutions in the Netherlands. The report recommends facilitating self-reporting of foreign donations and focusing efforts and resources on the sample of non-transparent institutions. This would increase trust and transparency within the community of Islamic institutions as a whole.
Islam in the Netherlands
Islam and Finance
The feasibility of assessing the size and scope of foreign funding to Islamic institutions in the Netherlands
The feasibility of assessing foreign funding conditions for Islamic institutions in the Netherlands
Information available in source countries
Synthesis and conclusions
Case study details
List of interviewees and consulted individuals