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Call for Project Applications: Mapping the Sociology of Religion in Britain

BSA Sociology of Religion Study Group

Mapping the Sociology of Religion in Britain via the history and development of SOCREL

A Call for Project Applications

The British Sociological Association supports the work of numerous ‘Study Groups’ which explore issues and research in specialist areas of the discipline. The BSA Sociology of Religion Study Group (SOCREL) is one such group. Over the last 45 years, it has flourished into a significant community of scholarship that welcomes researchers from a wide range of disciplines within and beyond Sociology. These include scholars in Theology and Religious Studies, Racial and Ethnic Studies, Gender Studies, and so on. It is likely that the events hosted by the Study Group have been an important catalyst for the discipline in Britain, not least by supporting the work of new scholars. Encouraging postgraduates has been integral to the ethos of the Study Group since its inception.

This SOCREL-funded project seeks to map the history and development of the Sociology of Religion in Britain using the events, networks, and leading scholars associated with the Study Group as a lens through which to explore key moments in the discipline. On a somewhat smaller scale, this project mirrors in some way the publication of Jennifer Platt’s book on the history of the BSA itself, published by Routledge in 2014 (A Sociological History of the British Sociological Association). This project will similarly attempt to map the history of SOCREL, evaluating its role in the history of the discipline; the way in which the Study Group has responded to internal and external dynamics and changing fields of interest; changes in the profile of members; and, its collaborations with other professional associations nationally and internationally within and outside the Sociology of Religion. 

The project will be overseen by the Study Group Committee. It is expected that the work will begin in September 2021 and will be concluded over an 18-month period. The outcomes of the project will include: a journal article for submission to Journal of Contemporary Religion, subject to peer review; content (including a short video film) for the SOCREL website; a blog piece for the SOCREL website; convening a panel at a BSA conference; and, delivery of a paper about the project at the Study Group conference in 2025 (the 50th anniversary). The Study Group Committee have allocated up to £5,000 for the work.

We invite proposals to work on this project by 12th April 2021. The proposal should include information under the following headings:

  • Aims and objectives (500 words)
  • Methodology and methods (1000 words)
  • Timetable (250 words)
  • Roles and responsibilities of those involved (250 words)
  • Institutional approval for those involved (if required) – e.g. letter/email from line-manager
  • Proposed budget (travel, subsistence, consumables, transcription, etc.)
  • Contact details for x 2 referees

Applicants should append to their proposal a 2-page CV outlining their career history, a list of publications, and their grant capture track record. We will be using RCUK criteria to evaluate proposals. Lead applicants should be members of the BSA and SOCREL (any co-investigator/s should also be BSA members), and should be affiliated with a University, or research centre / institute, or institution based in the UK. The successful applicant will be informed by 10th May 2021. Applications should be sent to the Study Group Convenor, Céline Benoit (c.benoit@aston.ac.uk).