SOAS University of London

SOAS Shapoorji Pallonji Institute of Zoroastrian Studies (SSPIZS)

Zoroastrianism, known of old as 'the Persian religion', is one of the world's most ancient prophetic faiths and one of Iran's great contributions to the history of religious thought. It is deeply rooted in the prehistoric Indo-Iranian and, ultimately, Indo-European tradition and thus shares a common heritage with the Vedic religion and Hinduism. In its long history it has influenced many other religions, notably Buddhism, Islam, Judaism and, especially, Christianity.

In the years after the Arab conquest of Iran in the 7th century, there was an exodus of Zoroastrians from Iran to the Indian subcontinent where they settled and became an influential minority under British colonial rule. The Parsis became renowned for their skill as entrepreneurs and generosity as philanthropists. Zoroastrians from both India and Iran have migrated to other parts of the world, especially Britain, the United States and Australia where they form diaspora communities today.

A Message From The Co-chairs:

Prof Almut Hintze & Dr Sarah Stewart (Co-chairs)
Prof Almut Hintze & Dr Sarah Stewart (Co-chairs)

The Institute was made possible by the generous donation from a Parsi benefactor, Mr Shapoor Mistry, in the name of his grandfather, Mr Pallonji Shapoorji Mistry. It was formally launched on 27 June 2018 SOAS. This new initiative has brought to fruition the efforts and dreams of all those who have worked hard to extend the tradition of Zoroastrian studies at SOAS and at the same time to broaden its reach.

The remit of the SSPIZS is to raise the profile of Zoroastrianism worldwide in three areas: teaching, research and outreach, which will be elaborated upon in the following pages. We are particularly proud of our scholarships programme, our current research projects and the recent exhibition, Living Zoroastrianism, as well as our plans for next year: a summer school and digital archive programme.

Institute Co-chairs

Contact Us

Email: +44 (0)20 7074 5146
Address: Room 330, Main Building, SOAS University of London, 10 Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG 

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We aim to send a quarterly newsletter to our subscribers, as well as information about upcoming events.

The newsletter highlights recent events, new works in Zoroastrian studies, and other topical information that we think will be of interest to you.

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Shapoorji Pallonji Scholarships

Deadline: April 2021

Thanks to the generosity of the Shapoorji Pallonji endowment for scholarships In Zoroastrian studies at SOAS there are a number of awards available for UK/EU and Overseas fee-paying students. These will normally provide a contribution to fees of up to a maximum of £13,000 each year for the duration of the award. In addition, a stipend of up to £10,000 per annum (or pro rata for part-time students) may also be awarded. Further information on the scholarships.


Related Degree Programmes
Related Modules
Summer School


Previous Exhibitions