February 2014 will see a new series of Westminster Faith Debates on the subject of ‘Global Religious Trends’. Moving on from its origins in the Religion and Society Programme, the series covers topics such as religious freedom, peace-building and overseas development. They are open to the public free of charge, and bring together leading academics and public figures to debate the latest research on religion and values.
The Westminster Faith Debates are organised by Charles Clarke and Linda Woodhead, and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and Lancaster University.
The debates will be held at RUSI, 61 Whitehall, London, SW1A 2ET, between 5.30 p.m. and 7.00 p.m. (followed by a drinks reception).
The full list of debates is below:
Weds 12th Feb: ‘What is driving sectarian violence in the wake of the Arab Spring?’ with Bassma Kodmani, Dr Toby Matthiesen, Kenan Malik, Rt Hon Jack Straw MP
Weds 26th Feb: ‘Can historic global Churches maintain central authority or must they devolve?’ with Prof Allan Anderson, Prof Kirsteen Kim, Prof Sebastian Kim, Christopher Landau, Paul Vallely
Weds 12th March: ‘Are attempts to promote worldwide religious freedom naïve or necessary?’ with Rt Hon Alistair Burt MP, Baroness Elizabeth Berridge, Prof Jørgen Nielsen, Prof Elizabeth Shakman Hurd
Weds 26th March: ‘How can religious moderates deal better with uncompromising hardliners and the conflicts they cause?’ with Sir Tony Baldry MP, Dr Masooda Bano, Prof Peter Herriott, Maajid Nawaz,
Thursday 1st May: ‘Do the benefits of engaging religion for development outweigh the dangers?’ with Rt Hon Douglas Alexander MP, Robert Calderisi, Dr Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh, Loretta Minghella
Weds 14th May: ‘How has religion become an agent in peace-building in conflict areas of the world?’ with Prof John Brewer, Dr Keith Kahn-Harris, Jonathan Powell, Prof Ian Reader
For further details and to register for a free place please visit the Faith Debates website or telephone Peta Ainsworth (01524 510826) with the name, institution (if applicable) and email address of each person you wish to register. Please also let Peta know which category you come under, e.g. Academic, Policy, FBO/voluntary organisation, religious group, media or other.