Saoud el-Mawla was born in Beirut in 1953. In 1984 he was awarded a doctorate in Islamic studies at the Sorbonne (Paris). Since 1985 he has been Professor of the Political and Religious Sociology of Arab Countries at the Institute of Social Sciences of the University of the Lebanon. He is vice-President of the Imam Shamseddin Foundation for Dialogue and President of the Arab Centre for Dialogue, Justice and Democracy. He is the author of a large number of works on inter-religious dialogue and on Shi’ism.