Indonesian professor wins King Faisal International Prize 2018 for service to Islam

Riyadh: Professor Irwandi Jaswir of Indonesia was named winner of the King Faisal International Prize, one of Saudi Arabia’s most prestigious prizes during a ceremony at a luxury hotel in the country’s capital on Wednesday, for “service to Islam”.

Prof. Jaswir, deputy dean of the International Institute for Halal Research and Training (INHART) was recognized for his contribution to the establishment of ‘Halal science’ pertaining to food; his research in that area and the development of new methods for quick detection of non-Halal substances in food.

A notable example being the ‘Portable Electronic Nose’ which detects within a few seconds the presence of alcohol or lard (porcine-derived fat) in foods.

Since its inception in 1979, the King Faisal International Prize (KFIP) has been honoring excellence in Service to Islam, Islamic Studies, Arabic Language & Literature, Medicine, and Science.

Each category prize consists of a certificate, a 200 gram 24-carat gold medal and SR750,000 ($2,00,000).

The aim is to inspire Muslims to participate in all aspects of human civilization, as well as enrich human knowledge and develop mankind.

The other prize winners were:

  • In Islamic studies, Jordan’s Professor Bashar Awad has won the award for his broad historical and geographical views in his editing studies which covered the works of Hadith and history of scholars as well as the most famous Islamic figures.
  • In Arabic Language & Literature, Professor Chokri Mabkhout of Tunisia was awarded the prize for his originality in the treatment and analysis of Arab biographical themes.
  • In medicine, Professor James P. Allison of the United States was given the award for his outstanding contributions to the development of the field of immunotherapy of cancer.
  • In science: University of Oxford’s Professor Sir John M. Ball was awarded the prize for his fundamental and groundbreaking contributions to nonlinear partial differential equations, the calculus of variations, and dynamical systems.


Governor of Makkah Prince Khaled Al-Faisal who is adviser to the King and chairman of the King Faisal Foundation and members of the selection committees, scholars, intellectuals and media persons attended the ceremony.