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The Impact of Neoliberal Policies, Practices and Ideas on Religious Organizations, ISA RC22 Yokohama 2014

Call for papers, deadline 30 September

Please find below description for a session to held at the XVIII ISA World Congress of Sociology in Yokohama, Japan 13 – 19 July 2014 ( Paper proposals can be sent via the site starting on June 3rd, with a deadline for submission of September 30th, 2013.

RC22 Roundtable Religious Organizations: The Impact of Neoliberal Policies, Practices and Ideas on Religious Organizations Session Organizer Tuomas MARTIKAINEN, Abo Akademi University, Finland, (scroll down the page)

The session focuses on impacts of neoliberal policies, practices and ideas on religious organizations. The session departs from an understanding that the global implementation of neoliberal policies in order to promote free market ideology has also led to (spillover) effects on religious organizations.

Neoliberalism-inspired changes on religious organizations include, among others, new forms of management techniques and faith-based service provision, strategic planning, consumer orientation and novel types of co-operation, such as networks, projects and private-public partnerships. Many of such activities have been adopted from the private sector, and have been mediated via public administration as well as consulting and marketing agencies.

Neoliberalism is also evident in the adoption of business-like forms of organizations among newer forms of religion and spirituality. Ideologically, neolib-eralism has also influenced theological thought. On the one hand, the growth of prosperity theology and mega-churches can be seen as expression of lived neoliberalism. On the other hand, neoliberalism has created opposition to its core values, whereby its focus on consumerism and a highly-individualized anthropology have been critiqued on religious grounds. Empirical submissions are preferred, but also theoretical pieces can be suggested.

The session welcomes submissions dealing with any religion and from all geographical areas.