News & Events


Keep abreast of all the latest research and activities of our members.

Upcoming events

  • The 2nd Annual Symposium on Sacred and Secular: Faith and Formation: 16 January 2015

This is a free one-day symposium asking ‘How do religion and belief inform how we do politics, policy and practice?’

Click her for the poster: Faith and Formation

The last twenty years has seen a vast array of research invested in understanding and measuring the resources provided by religion and belief in the public sphere: people, networks, buildings. The implication is that a secular society wants to use religion and belief to its advantage, without addressing the underlying values and practices by which it operates. Instead, this symposium proposes to explore the values and practices at the heart of our society, and how they inform politics, policy and practice. We are especially interested to explore how particular cultures of religion and belief can provide alternative value formations that challenge the status quo.

  • Reading group continues and goes international.

We are thrilled to announce that the Contemporary Cultures of Religion and Belief Reading Group has just opened its first sister group at the University of Ottawa, Canada. The group will be co-run by PhD candidates Christine Cusack and Manvitha Singamsetty.

Past events

1st Symposium of Sacred and Secular: Politics, Policy, Practice: 8th January 2014.

Secularization and desecularization theories have introduced us to an area of contested knowledge regarding the meaning of believing or not believing in the everyday conceptualization of societies, communities, groups and individuals. We are living in a secular context, which, nevertheless is characterised by religious diversity. Secularization is a triply contested notion; what it is, whether it happened and whether it is valuable. Regardless, there is general agreement that interdisciplinary dialogue needs to be improved.

Politics, policy and professional practice have been framed by this secular context. In politics, parties struggle to project a sense of common agency; in policy, the state acts as a secular commissioner for faith-based social action; and professional practice is characterized by religious illiteracy in service delivery.

This symposium will aim to explore both existing and potential actions surrounding religion, secularity and change in the UK.