Religion, Spirituality, and Democratic Renewal Fellowship — Due April 6th

Social Science Research Council (USA)

The Religion, Spirituality, and Democratic Renewal (RSDR) Fellowship of the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) aims to bring knowledge of the place of religion and spirituality into scholarly and public conversations about renewing democracy in the United States. These fellowships are offered by the SSRC Program on Religion and the Public Sphere with the support and partnership of the Fetzer Institute.

Applications are due April 6, 2021, 5:00 p.m. US Eastern time. Apply online at apply.ssrc.org.

The fellowships offer research support over a period of up to 12 months to doctoral students who have advanced to candidacy and to postdoctoral researchers within five years of their PhD. Doctoral candidates will receive up to $15,000 and postdoctoral researchers up to $18,000 toward research-related expenses. Applications are welcome from scholars at either of these career stages from any country around the world.

Details at: Religion, Spirituality, and Democratic Renewal Fellowship | Social Science Research Council (SSRC) | Brooklyn, NY, USA

Funding: Jack Shand Research Grants for the social-scientific study of religion

Now Accepting Shand Research Grant Applications

A generous bequest from Jack Shand, a long–term member of Society for the Scientific Study of Religion until his death in 2001, has made it possible for SSSR to offer Jack Shand Research Grants to support research in the social scientific study of religion.

For 2021, SSSR Council allocated $45,000 to this program. As part of our commitment to racial equality, 2021 Jack Shand Research Funds will support projects on racial, ethnic, and religious minority groups. While individual grants do not ordinarily exceed $5000, it is possible to make a special request for more, to be considered at the committee’s discretion. Applicants must have finished the Ph.D. degree and must be members of SSSR. In the case of co–authored requests, one author must be a member. Intellectual merit is the criterion by which proposals will be evaluated.

Individuals are expected to use the Jack Shand award for expenses connected with their research. SSSR prioritizes applications that support direct research expenses. Shand Award funding is transferred to the principle investigator’s university unless other arrangements are made. Please note that SSSR does not allow for any indirect cost recovery.

All applications must be submitted via the online submission form, which is accessible through the link at the top of this page. Applications emailed to the committee chair or executive office will not be accepted. A Shand Research Grant application must include a project proposal (up to 4 pages, single-spaced), budget (expenses with descriptions/justifications), and the principle investigator’s curriculum vitae in PDF format. The deadline is May 1, 2021.

Funding decisions will be made by August 1, 2021.
More information: sssreligion.org/awards-grants/jack-shand-research-grants/

RFP: Religion, Spirituality, & Democratic Renewal Fellowships

The Religion, Spirituality, and Democratic Renewal (RSDR) Fellowship of the Social Science Research Council (SSRC), with the support of the Fetzer Institute, aims to bring knowledge of the place of religion and spirituality into scholarly and public conversations about renewing democracy in the United States.

These fellowships offer research support over a period of up to 12 months to doctoral students who have advanced to candidacy and to postdoctoral researchers within five years of their PhD.

We welcome proposals on all aspects and dimensions of religion and spirituality in its relation to democracy from across all fields in the social sciences, humanities, and theology.

Applications are due April 6, 2021. More information on the fellowship, eligibility, and application process is available on the Program’s website.

https://www.ssrc.org/fellowships/view/religion-spirituality-and-democratic-renewal-fellowship/

PhD Scholarship Funding

An ESRC funded PhD studentship is now available for a project that researches Muslim women in higher education institutions in Britain. The project is jointly supervised by Dr Khursheed Wadia (Warwick University)  and Line Nyhagen (Loughborough University). The application deadline is Friday, March 5th, 2021.

The announcement for this position can be found at: https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/cross_fac/mgsdtp/collaborativeandjoint/#joint

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).

Funding Opportunity: Research on Muslim Women’s Experiences of Maternity Care

About MWNUK

Muslim Women’s Network UK (MWNUK) is a small charity (no.1155092) that works to improve social justice and equality for Muslim women and girls. We find out about their experiences through research and helpline enquiries. We identify policy and practice gaps and use this information to influence political decision makers and inform our community campaigns. We also develop resources and train women, so they are better aware of their rights. 

About the Research

MWNUK has secured funding from the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation to undertake research into Muslim women’s experiences of maternity care in England.

Research Aim

The aim of this research is to develop an in-depth understanding of the experiences of Muslim women who have accessed maternity care in the last five years in England. The main objective when analysing their experiences is to find out whether the women felt they were subjected to discriminatory attitudes and behaviours, what this looked like to them and how they felt it impacted on their health care (e.g. whether it could be contributing to increased maternal mortality and morbidity) so that lessons can be learned to mitigate existing inequalities.  

Background to the Research

The deep inequalities in maternity care and outcomes in England are well documented. Black women are 4-5 times more likely to die during pregnancy, birth and the postpartum period than White women, while for Asian women it is 2-3 times more likely to be the case. A number of factors may contribute to poorer care and outcomes for certain groups of women. These include biological factors (e.g. individual physiologies or specific underlying health conditions among women from racialised minorities); structural inequalities impacting on socio-economic status, levels of education and thus capacity to communicate effectively; poor maternity practices and discriminatory attitudes among health professionals; insecure migration status leading to delays in seeking help. All of these can increase the risk of complications and limit access to ante-natal care and information. However, all women regardless of their social background or location should receive equally high standards of care. 

In this research, we focus on women’s experiences of discrimination and bias because it is essential that service providers understand what this looks like so that bespoke training can be developed to challenge / change attitudes as opposed to generic equality, diversity and inclusion training.

Research Questions

When gathering in depth information from Muslim women, questions will be designed to elicit the following information:

  • If and how experiences vary according to differing ethnicities (with a focus on Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Indian and Black African and African-Caribbean backgrounds), educational levels, ages, language needs and migration status;
  • If and how experiences vary according to types of maternity care e.g. antenatal advice / care; care during birth; and post-natal advice / care;
  • Perceptions of how they are dealt with by and attitudes of different healthcare practitioners
  • The standard of care received;
  • Mental health impact of experiences i.e. how it made the women feel, including whether their experiences affected their further engagement with health service professionals;
  • Perceptions of physical health impacts including: complications, traumatic births; impact on mother and baby’s health

Research Time-Table

We estimate that this research will take approximately 6 months:

  • October 2020 – desk research on BAME women’s maternal health and analysis of the results of the online survey to be conducted by MWN among Muslim women who have accessed maternity care in England over the last 5 years
  • November 2020 – interview women
  • December 2020 /January 2021 – interview women
  • January / February 2021 – analysis of interview data
  • February / March 2021– first draft of report
  • April / May 2021 – final report

Research Location

Although MWNUK is based in Birmingham, the researcher will be expected to work from home and will conduct telephone or video interviews with women across England.

Applicant Profile

We invite suitably qualified individuals to apply such as those with research experience, preferably to PhD standard and who have experience of interviewing women from Black Asian Minority Ethnic backgrounds. The ability to speak a South Asian language (preferably Urdu or Punjabi) is desirable. The post is open to women only, as it is an occupational requirement that the post be held by a woman (Schedule 9, Part 1, Paragraph 1, Equality Act 2010).

Application Time-Table

  • Deadlines for Applications: 12 noon Monday 28th September 2020
  • Interviews: Week beginning 5th October 2020

Remuneration and Scope of Work to be Covered

The researcher will be self-employed and will be paid £12,600 for the research and report which will include:

  • Analysing an online survey on Muslim women’s maternity experiences
  • Contacting women and arranging about 35 interviews
  • Analysing the interviews
  • Writing a draft followed by a final report

Note:  Although MWN will identify the women to be interviewed, the researcher may be required to provide some support to identify women for the research.

How to Apply

Please submit a cover letter explaining why you are interested in carrying out this research, strengths you can bring to this piece of work and experience you have of working with and conducting research about women from racialised minorities. Cover letters should be a maximum of 3 sides of A4. Please send these to contact@mwnuk.co.uk.  By 12 noon  Monday 28th September 2020.

SOCREL Posts and Essay Prize

We’re pleased to publish a new blog post this week from Ali Kassem, a doctoral researcher at the University of Sussex and winner of the 2019 Peter B Clarke Memorial Essay Prize. Ali writes about his research among women who wear hijab in Lebanon, and he reflects on the benefits of putting his thoughts into the essay and the positive effect of feedback and review he’s received since winning. You can read his post here:https://socrelstudygroup.blogspot.com/2020/04/islamophobia-and-decolonising-sociology.html

This year’s essay prize is open for current postgraduates who become members with Socrel. Details are on our website, and I want to flag that we have extended the deadline to 30 April for submissions. You’ve got a month to go – please send us your writing. If you are a supervisor of PhD researchers in the sociology of religion, please pass this opportunity on to them. https://www.britsoc.co.uk/groups/study-groups/sociology-of-religion-study-group/funding/
With best regards,
Michael Munnik
Publications and Communications, Socrel

Seed Corn Funding Competition: Call for Applications

As part of its ongoing effort to invest in its membership, Socrel invites applications for seed corn funding to support the development of significant and innovative work in the sociology of religion.

This competition is open to Socrel members at any stage of their careers who are also members of the British Sociological Association (BSA) and based at a UK university.

We will make one award of up to £5000 to be used in 2021.

The deadline for applications is 15th January 2020. Applicants will be notified of the outcome by end of January/early February 2020.

This award may be spent, in line with the BSA’s terms and conditions, on travel, subsistence, a one-off work package delivered by a third party e.g. event recording, transcription, research expenses e.g. equipment, software, printing, but not salary or indirect costs/overheads/full economic costing (fEC). We are open-minded as to the type of activity the seed corn funding is used for, for example, a writing workshop, pilot fieldwork, but it must be clearly designed to develop further work.[1]

We welcome applications from groups of members. In this instance, there must be a designated lead applicant who is a Socrel and BSA member and all co-applicants must have at least Socrel membership.

Any seed corn activity must be undertaken in line with the (lead) applicant’s university’s codes of ethics and conduct and data protection policies. The BSA will pay the award to the successful (lead) applicant’s institution once an invoice has been received.

The application form (see appendix A), the lead applicant CV, and short CVs for any other co-applicant named (if applicable) must be emailed to the Socrel Convenor, Céline Benoit (c.benoit@aston.ac.ukmailto:c.benoit@aston.ac.uk).

A note of support for the proposal from the (lead) applicant’s line manager/head of department/postgraduate supervisor/institutional point of contact should also be emailed separately to Céline by the competition closing date.

Criteria:

Applications will be judged by the Socrel Chair, another Socrel committee member, and two independent volunteer Socrel members, using the following criteria, which are ranked in descending order, using the criteria used by the RCUK

1. Eligibility of applicant(s): affiliation to a UK university; Socrel AND BSA membership for the (lead) applicant and at least Socrel membership for any co-applicants;
2. Innovation;
3. Significance;
4. Clarity of pathway to output(s) and/or outcome(s) e.g. a research project proposal, publicly
available report, film, journal article, social impact[2];
5. Applicant background and experience and proposal match;
6. Benefit to Sociology of Religion in the UK;
7. Value for money.

Please email c.benoit@aston.ac.uk<mailto:c.benoit@aston.ac.uk> if you have any queries.

[1] Any event(s) organised should not clash with any Socrel-run ones or the BSA annual conference (please check the Socrel website or with Socrel Events Officer Rachael Shillitoe (rachael.shillitoe@york.ac.uk<mailto:rachael.shillitoe@york.ac.uk>) if unsure of scheduling).

[2] Here we follow the Economic and Social Research Council’s definition of social impact, please visit https://esrc.ukri.org/research/impact-toolkit/what-is-impact/ for details.

Notices from the Australian Association for the Study of Religion

Call for Papers:
Conferences

  • International Conference on Religious Tourism (ICRT), University of Punjab, Lahore Pakistan, 8-9 January 2020. Abstract deadline: 11 November 2019. More info.
  • “Mosques, power and politics”, Copenhagen, Denmark, 22-24 January 2020. Abstract deadline: 15 November 2019. More info.
  • The 25th Nordic Conference in the Sociology of Religion. 17-19 August 2020, Gothenburg, Sweden on ‘Religious Organisation(s): Challenges and changes in contemporary society’. Session proposal deadline: 15 November 2019. More info.
  • British Muslim Charitable Organisations: A Best Practice Forum, Birmingham, 15 January 2020. Abstract deadline: 22 November 2019. More info.
  • Rethinking​ ​Media, Religion and Secularities. Conference of the International Society for Media, Religion and Culture Conference location: Sigtuna Foundation, Sigtuna, Sweden. Conference dates: 4-7 of August 2020. Deadline for Paper proposals: 6 December 2019. More info.
  • International Communication Association Preconference on Intersectional Imaginaries in Media, Religion & Gender, Gold Coast, Australia, May 2020. Proposal deadline 15 December 2019. More info.
  • The XXII Quinquennial World Congress of the IAHR, hosted by the New Zealand Association for the Study of Religions, will take place at the University of Otago, in Dunedin, New Zealand from 23-29 August 2020. Submission deadline 31 December 2019. More info.
  • Navigating the non/confessional in university Islamic studies. University of Birmingham. 20-22 April 2020. Submission deadline 17 January 2020. More info.

  Publications

  • Call for Papers on Digital Visibilities of the Religious. Deadline 15 January 2020. More info.
  • Call for papers on Religion & Ecology for a special issue of Religions. Deadline 31 May 2020.

Postgrad/ECR Opportunities

Also if you’re on Facebook, we have a postgrad page so do join us 🙂

New Publications
Oosterbaan, M., van de Kamp, L. and Bahia, J. (2019), Global Trajectories of Brazilian Religion: Lusospheres, London: Bloomsbury Publishing.