The Scientific Committee was set up in 1985 at the initiative of Professor Denis van Berchem in order to offer advice to the Board regarding the worthiness of projects, to assist in developing research programmes and in examining applications to the Foundation. Today, the Committee consists of the following:

  • President, Prof. Charles Genequand, professor emeritus, Université de Genève,
  • Prof. Frédéric Bauden, Université de Liège,
  • Prof. Giovanni Curatola, Università degli Studi di Udine,
  • Prof. François Déroche, Collège de France, Paris,
  • Prof. Anne-Marie Eddé, Université de Paris 1-Panthéon/Sorbonne,
  • Prof. Bruce Fudge, Université de Genève,
  • Prof. Hugh N. Kennedy, School of Oriental and African Studies, London,
  • Mrs. Louise Martin-van Berchem, member of the Board, Geneva. 

The first Committee met on the 22nd of October 1985 in Geneva with the following people attending:

  • Prof. Denis van Berchem, former president, Université de Genève,
  • Mr. Alain Dufour, Geneva-based publisher,
  • Prof. Nikita Elisséeff, Université Lyon II (member from 1985 until 1997),
  • Prof. Charles Genequand, Université de Genève,
  • Prof. Oleg Grabar, Harvard University and Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton (member from 1985 until 2000),
  • Prof. Ludvik Kalus, professor emeritus, Université de Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV) (member from 1985 until 2020),
  • Prof. Michael Meinecke, Deutsches Archäologisches Institut, Damascus, and Director of the Museum für Islamische Kunst, Berlin (member from 1985 until 1995),
  • Dr. Basil Robinson, former conservator of the Victoria and Albert Museum of London (member from 1985 until 1997),
  • Prof. Michel Terrasse, Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, IVe Section, Paris (member from 1985 until 2000).

In 1985, Prof. Denis van Berchem was appointed president of the Committee by the Board, and Alain Dufour and Charles Genequand were asked to report to the Board on the discussions of the Committee. Since 1986, the Committee met once a year at the end of June. Prof. Giovanni Oman, Istituto Universitario Orientale in Naples, was also a member of the Committee from 1986 until 1999, as well as Prof. C. Edmund Bosworth, University of Manchester, from 1986 until 2002, Prof. Mikel de Epalza, Universitad d’Alacant, from 1998 until 2000, Prof. Heinz Gaube, Eberhard-Karls Universität Tübingen, from 1998 until 2015, Prof. Renata Holod, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, from 2001 until 2017, Prof. Michael Rogers, School of Oriental and African Studies and curator of the Nasser D. Khalili Collection of Islamic Art, London, from 1995 until 2012, Prof. Gregor Schoeler, Université de Bâle, from 1995 until 2020, and Prof. Alan Walmsley, University of Copenhagen, from 2014 until 2017.

In 1992, Professor Charles Genequand took over from Professor Denis van Berchem who retired from the presidency of the Scientific Committee but continued to sit at the Board until his death in 1994.