The CCI was founded in 1995 to bring attention to the scholarly study of Islam and Muslim societies and communities in Africa and beyond. Since then, it has completed a number of research projects and cooperated with researchers and institutes across the globe. The subjects of the projects include Islamic Law in Africa; Religion, Culture and Identity in post-apartheid South Africa; Muslim Publics in Africa; Islam, Gender and Sexuality; Islam and Manuscript Cultures in sub-Saharan Africa; Muslim Intellectuals in the Lake Chad Transnational Space.
Through its projects, the CCI provides a place for researchers, both senior and up and coming, to share ideas and develop insights about Islam and Muslim societies. It creates a space where students are inspired and supported to embark upon a systematic study and reflection on issues of great interest to scholars and the general public.
The publications of the CCI are a testimony to its achievements. The Journal for Islamic Studies (JIS), a peer-reviewed publication accredited by the Department of Education (South Africa), is making a mark in the study of religion in general, and in Islam in particular. A number of special issues published by the JIS focus on issues related to Islam in Africa. The Annual Review of Islam in Africa (ARIA) provides a forum for young and established researchers to publish their findings in a shorter and accessible format.