From the website:
The idea for Understanding Islam through Virtual Worlds project was hatched with a very specific idea in mind: How could people learn about other cultures in an authentic, experiential space — specifically, how could we learn about cultures that self-identified as Muslim? We chose the virtual world of Second Life for many reasons, among them that it is the best international platform — more than 70% of its users are from outside the United States. Our goal was to to see what we could learn about Islam — not by inviting particular people with particular perspectives into Second Life, but rather to follow the trail of what was already happening culturally in the space that might yield new insight about Islam.
The project won the Gov 2.0 Award at the 2009 O’Reilly Gov2.0 Summit and Expo.
Here’s the video of Rita J. King’s presentation. Among other things, it talks about Second Life as a tool for online dialogue: