UCSIA Summer School Workshop 2023

In preparation of future summer schools…

From 30 August to 1 September 2023, UCSIA brought together a multidisciplinary and international group of 16 scholars in the fields of theology, humanities and social sciences for a closed academic workshop. This workshop was organized in preparation of the upcoming cycle of UCSIA Summer Schools for PhD and postdoctoral students, to be held from 2024-2026.

The programme of the workshop was designed to discern contemporary issues in the study of religion and consisted of expert lectures and discussion sessions on theory-building, methodology and the regional and societal relevance of academic research on religion. The participants of the workshop included:

  • the members of the UCSIA Summer School steering committee:
    • John Arblaster, Associate Professor at the Ruusbroec Institute, University of Antwerp and Visiting Professor at KU Leuven;
    • Jayeel Cornelio, Professor of Development Studies, Ateneo de Manila University;
    • Bert De Munck, Professor at the History Department of the University of Antwerp;
    • Judith Gruber, Professor of Systematic Theology, KU Leuven;
    • David Henig, Associate Professor of Cultural Anthropology, Utrecht University;
    • Walter Van Herck, Professor at the Philosophy Department of the University of Antwerp;
  • alumni of the ‘Mobility’-cycle (2019-2022):
    • Marko Barisic, PhD Candidate in Social Anthropology, University of Kent;
    • Francis Benyah, PhD Candidate in the Study of Religions, Abo Akademi University;
    • Ann Gillian Chu, Assistant Professor at the Department of Religion & Philosophy, Hong Kong Baptist University;
    • Stéphanie Machabée, Postdoctoral Research Associate at Yale Center for British Art, Yale University;
    • Shilpi Pandey, PhD Candidate at the Department of Public Law, VUB;
  • renowned experts in the study of religion:
    • Siphiwe Dube, Senior Lecturer Political Studies, University of the Witwatersrand;
    • Jude Lal Fernando, Associate Professor of Contextual Theologies and Interfaith Relations, Trinity College Dublin;
    • Vlad Naumescu,  Associate Professor of Social Anthropology, Central European University;
    • Elayne Oliphant, Associate Professor of Anthropology and Religious Studies, New York University;
    • Cornelia Richter, Professor of Systematic Theology and Hermeneutics, University of Bonn.


20th Anniversary of the UCSIA Summer School

In 2023 UCSIA celebrates the 20th anniversary of its summer school for PhD and postdoctoral students with a research interest in religion. To mark the occasion, UCSIA organized an academic workshop to discuss contemporary issues in the study of religion. The participants included 5 alumni, 5 guest lecturers, and the 6 members of the UCSIA Summer School steering committee.

Read more about the history of the UCSIA Summer School ... 

Impressions of the workshop

© Sigrid Meulemans

From left to right: Elayne Oliphant, Erik De Bom, Bert De Munck, Walter Van Herck, Gilke Gunst, John Arblaster, Jayeel Cornelio, David Henig, Francis Benyah, Vlad Naumescu, Marko Barisic, Shilpi Pandey, Ann Gillian Chu, Stéphanie Machabée and Siphiwe Dube.

Not on the photo: Jude Lal Fernando, Judith Gruber and Cornelia Richter.

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