Chris Allen (born 1966) is a British academic who researches contemporary Islamophobia and anti-Muslim hate crime. Currently based in the Institute of Applied Social Studies (IASS) at the University of Birmingham, he has been described by the University of Exeter as the UK's most experienced scholar on Islamophobia. His research areas include sociology, religious studies, cultural studies, social policy, and theology. He is the current Editor in Chief of The Journal for Peace, Gender & Development Studies.
Shortly after the events of 9/11 he was commissioned by the European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia to co-author its "Summary report on Islamophobia in the EU after 11 September 2001" with Jorgen S. Nielsen. Published in May 2002, the report collated the findings from the largest monitoring project to have been undertaken into the phenomenon of Islamophobia in the world. Based on 75 reports — 15 from each EU member nation, the report highlighted the regularity with which ordinary Muslims became targets for abusive and sometimes violent retaliatory attacks after 9/11. Despite localized differences within each member nation, the recurrence of attacks on recognizable and visible traits of Islam and Muslims was the report's most significant finding. Incidents consisted of verbal abuse, blaming all Muslims for terrorism, forcibly removing women's hijabs, spitting on Muslims, calling children "Usama", and random assaults. Muslims have been hospitalized and on one occasion paralyzed. The report also discussed the portrayal of Muslims in the media. Inherent negativity, stereotypical images, fantastical representations, and exaggerated caricatures were all identified. The report concluded that "a greater receptivity towards anti-Muslim and other xenophobic ideas and sentiments has, and may well continue, to become more tolerated". The report was recently described as a "seminal document" in a debate in the European Parliament (19 November 2009).
Soon after the publication of the EUMC report, Allen became the first UK doctoral researcher to receive funding from the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to undertake research into the phenomenon of Islamophobia.