Rahma Hersi is a legal scholar whose research interests lie in equal access to education & labour opportunities, religion and culture and feminist theory and questions of integration of immigrants in Finland.
Law School, Faculty of Social Sciences and Business Studies
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Rahma Hersi is an Islamic finance lawyer and advocate for economic justice in Africa. She has over 15 years of experience across several markets in North America, the Middle East, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Europe. Rahma works closely with regulators, multi-lateral organizations,development agencies, and companies in the public and private sector.
Rahma is currently a doctoral student and an early stage researcher in the faculty of law and business studies at the University of Eastern Finland. She is pursuing her Ph.D. in law with a focus on religion and culture, international and human rights, labor law, feminism, and public
Rahma graduated in 2008 with her Master of Laws (LL.M.) from the Indiana University RobertMcKinney School of Law, with a focus on international comparative law. She also received herLL.B. in Shari’a and Law and Bachelor of Islamic Studies from the Islamic University ofIslamabad in Pakistan. Additionally, Rahma has a Diploma in Islamic finance & arbitration from the Global International Center for Islamic Finance (INCEIF) in Malaysia and a Diploma in Arabic from the Islamic University of Africa in Sudan.Of note, she participated in the 5th Inter-Graduate Conference at Cornell University and presenteda paper titled, “A Value Oriented Legal Theory for Muslim Countries in the 21st Century: AComparative Study of Both Islamic Law and Common Law Systems.” Ms. Hersi has been instrumental in pushing the agenda of Women in Business and Financial Inclusion for marginalized communities in not only Kenya but other African countries. She currently sits as a board member at a leading microfinance institution in Somalia and is the 1st woman appointed to this position in Somalia. Rahma also sits as the only advisor on Islamic finance in the Financial Review Panel appointed by the Capital Markets Authority (CMA). This was set up to ensure financial inclusion, access of financial products and opportunities are open to all and to reduce poverty and create a more productive society. Rahma is fluent in 4 languages including Arabic, Somali, English, and Swahili.
She authored the first comprehensive report on Islamic finance and its growth inKenya published by John Wiley Islamic Finance Series entitled, “The Islamic Finance Handbook: A Practioner’s Guide to the Global Markets.” Rahma was featured in the 1st Women in Islamic Finance Report 2016 that was launched at the World Islamic Banking Conference, where shediscussed “breaking the cultural barriers in the industry.” Most recently, the 2018 Islamic Commercial Law Report published her article on Islamic microfinance in Kenya. Rahma has alsocontributed the 1st groundbreaking research on the Prospects and Challenges of Microfinance inthe IGAD Region published in May 2018. In 2020 Rahma advised and worked on a DFID Somalia project and authored the report ” From Economic Darkness To Hope : A Rapid Review Assessment of Somalia’s Individual Debt & Credit.