Islamic Built Environment Perception in Malaysia

By Norliza Mohd Isa and Ismawi Zen.

Published by The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society

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The main purpose of this paper is to highlight the issues regarding the Islamic built environment in Malaysia. Because Islam is the nation’s majority religion, the government of Malaysia strives to adopt Islamic values in its regulation of Malaysia’s built environment. Yet, given Malaysia’s multi-racial and multi-religious lifestyle, how can an Islamic-based, built environment play a role there? Have Islamic concepts been implemented correctly and appropriately in the construction of Malaysia’s cities? Thus, this paper also will utilize a methodology meant to elicit the perceptions of experts—those who are related in the decision-making process of city development and design concepts including administrators, professionals, academicians and Islamic scholars—on the meaning of an Islamic built environment in Malaysian cities. This ongoing research employs descriptive and survey-based research designs rooted in qualitative and quantitative research paradigms. The research method implemented is a Delphi method that uses structured and semi-structured interviews for primary data collection to achieve the objectives of this research include (1) to define the perceptions of experts from a variety of races and religions on the subject of Islamic built environments in order to ensure the appropriate implementation of the concept in Malaysian contexts; and (2) to evaluate and analyze the findings with regard to the degree to which the study area in Putrajaya are truly Islamic cities and are compatible with the criteria associated with an Islamic built environment in Malaysia. This research anticipates coming out with the characteristics of an Islamic built environment based on the input of “experts” and suggestions regarding how professionals can use these perceptions as guidance to concretely act on the design process.

Keywords: Perception, Islamic Build Environment, Malaysian, Multi-racial and Multi-religious Country

The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society, Volume 2, Issue 2, pp.53-64. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 256.227KB).

Norliza Mohd Isa

PhD Candidate andTutor, Department of Landscape Architecture, Faculty of Built Environment, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Kulliyah Architecture and Environmental Design, International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM), University Teknologi Malaysia, Skudai, Skudai, Johor, Malaysia

Norliza Mohd Isa received her Degree of Architecture (2007), and Master of Architecture(2009) both in University Technology of Malaysia. She is a Tutor at Department of Landscape Architecture in University Technology of Malaysia. Currently pursuing her Ph.D., at Kulliyah Architecture and Environmental Design in International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM).

Ismawi Zen

Professor, Department of Landscape Architecture, Kulliyyah of Architecture & Environmental Design, International Islamic University Malaysia, Gombak, Selangor, MALAYSIA, International Islamic University Malaysia, Gombak, Malaysia

Bachelor in Urban and Regional Planning (Hons.) 2nd Class (Upper), University Technology Malaysia in 1978, Master of Philosophy (Landscape Architecture) University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom in 1982, Doctor of Philosophy (Architecture)University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom in 1994.