CALL for journal articles: “Building an Open Qualitative Science”



RSF: The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences

ISSUE ON: Building an Open Qualitative Science

The qualitative research tradition appears to be on an upward trajectory. In the last five years alone, qualitative scholars have generated a raft of influential findings within such core social science areas as poverty and material deprivation, residential segregation, policing and the criminal justice system, health disparities, immigration and ethnicity, housing and eviction, public surveillance, populism and the radical right, and science and genetics. This influential line of recent qualitative scholarship is joined by an equally influential stream of “fast science” qualitative journalism appearing in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and all manner of other media outlets. The country depends heavily on these two streams of qualitative work to build a richer basic science, to develop policy, and to understand ongoing crises and new developments in real time.

Although no one could dispute the profound impact of these scholarly and journalistic streams of qualitative work, the growing success of the form has also made it a target of criticism, much of it raising concerns about replicability, transparency, and representativeness. In some cases, this “open science” criticism comes in an overtly hostile form, a type of criticism that’s focused on discrediting the tradition in its entirety or, alternatively, advocating on behalf of particular variants of it.

The American Voices Project (AVP), the country’s first platform for conducting qualitative interviews with a nationally representative sample, was also spawned by this growing commitment to open science but instead proceeds by developing a new qualitative form that’s intended to stand side-by-side with the already immensely successful existing variants. The AVP’s simple objective is to begin the task of building a new qualitative research form that rests on representative samples, open data, and secondary analysis and that’s intended to supplement—rather than replace—existing qualitative forms.

The purpose of this call for articles is to roll out this AVP-based qualitative analysis by opening up the AVP dataset to qualified scholars and analysts. We welcome research on the many topics—including health, poverty, politics, protest, employment, coping, and anomie—that the AVP interviews can assist in understanding. Although most issues of RSF are topically focused, this issue will be topically broad and is instead unified by a commitment to exploring the hopefully broad payoff to this new form of qualitative data collection. The balance of this call discusses the design of the AVP, the topics covered in the interview schedule, and the types of research questions that it opens up and that are supported by this call.

Please click here for a full description of the topics covered in this call for articles.

Submission instructions and timeline

To secure the interview and survey protocols and a sample interview, please submit the nondisclosure agreement here. After doing so, prospective contributors can apply by submitting a CV, an abstract of their study (up to two pages in length, single spaced), and supporting tables, figures, pictures, references, or other relevant material (up to two additional pages). These should be submitted by no later than 5 pm EST on January 5, 2022 to (NOTE: If you wish to submit a proposal and do not yet have an account with RSF, it can take up to 48 hours to get credentials. So please start your application at least two days before the deadline.)

All submissions must be original work that has not been previously published either in part or in full. Only abstracts submitted to will be considered. Each paper will receive a $1,000 honorarium when the issue is published. All questions regarding this issue should be directed to Suzanne Nichols, Director of Publications, at, and not to the email addresses of the editors of the issue.

A conference will take place at the Russell Sage Foundation in New York City on December 9, 2022. The selected contributors will gather for a one-day workshop to present draft papers (due a month prior to the conference on 11/11/22) and receive feedback from the other contributors and editors. Travel costs, food, and lodging for one author per paper will be covered by the foundation. Papers will be circulated before the conference. After the conference, the authors will submit their revised drafts by 2/22/2023. The papers will then be sent out to three additional scholars for formal peer review. Having received feedback from reviewers, the editors, and RSF, authors will revise their papers by 8/17/2023. The full and final issue will be published in spring 2024. Papers will be published open access on the RSF website as well as in several digital repositories, including JSTOR and UPCC/Muse.

Please click here for a full description of the topics covered in this call for articles.

Virtual Symposium: “Opacity, Transcendence, and Tradition in African Diaspora Religion of The Americas: Horizons of Knowing.” October 15, 2021

The Michigan State University African Atlantic Research Team (AART) cordially invites you to attend its
25th Anniversary Symposium to be held virtually, October 15, 2021.
Given our on-going research on religion and African descendants in the Americas, and the indebtedness we owe to those who mentored and inspired that work, the conceptual and thematic focus of the Symposium will be: “Opacity, Transcendence, and Tradition in African Diaspora Religion of the Americas: Horizons of Knowing.”

Among confirmed program participants are Veronique Altglas, Queen’s University Belfast; David Carrasco, Harvard University; James Spickard, University of California Redlands; James H. Sweet, University of Wisconsin; and a keynote address by J. Lorand Matory, Duke University. We also will recognize the legacy of Michigan State University’s late Dr. Ruth Simms Hamilton who introduced ideas of the African Diaspora as a global social phenomenon to many in academic arenas. An academic gift presentation will be made to her Alma Mater, Talladega College of Alabama.

The Symposium’s conceptual intent also is to elaborate Dr. Charles H. Long’s ‘counter-hegemonic’ metaphor of opacity as a challenge to repressive analytical typologies that impose meanings inappropriate and hostile to the ‘lived reality’ they seek to describe.

The focus is derived from AART’s cross-disciplinary research into sacred ideas and practices of African descendants of the Americas’ African Diaspora as fundamental contributions to the hemisphere’s diverse and ever-evolving religious landscape.

The Symposium Program will simultaneously celebrate the 25 Years AART has mentored students of color toward the academic PhD as we include a keynote address and two panel dialogues discussing the State of Research regarding Opacity, Transcendence, and Tradition of African Descendant Religion in the Americas’ Portion of the African Diaspora.

Registration is now available via Eventbrite at Cost is $25 for professionals and $10 for students. Please share this announcement with researchers, scholars, educators, and serious others who may wish to join us in this historic event.

The African Atlantic Research Team –

Job: Assistant Professor of Religion and the Environment

Vanderbilt University, Department of Religious Studies

Tenure Track Assistant Professor of Religion and the Environment

We seek a candidate with a PhD degree in Religious Studies or a related humanities/humanistic social science discipline with expertise in the study of religion. Ability to contribute to the College’s new interdisciplinary Climate Studies program is essential.

Area of specialization, theoretical and methodological approach, historical period, cultural framework and geographical locus is open. Some examples of appropriate research foci at the intersection of religion and climate may include but are not limited to animal studies, bioethics, Black geographies and ecologies, comparative eschatologies, earth-based epistemologies and ontologies, immigration and environment, indigenous environmental studies, new religious movements, religious law and ethics, urban ecologies, environmental geopolitics, etc.

The Religious Studies department particularly values a diversity of worldviews and discourses that have been historically marginalized.  In addition to contributing to the growth and development of the department and to the field of Religious Studies, the successful candidate will join a growing number of faculty across the sciences, social sciences and humanities in Climate Studies and benefit from a strong institutional commitment to research and teaching in this area.

The normal tenure-track course load is two courses per semester (four per year). The successful candidate should expect to teach introductory classes in Religious Studies as well as advanced courses in her/his/their area of specialization, and one course yearly in Climate Studies. Qualified candidates should be prepared to mentor graduate students and teach advanced courses in the methodologies appropriate to the study of religion in the Graduate Department of Religion.

PhD must be in-hand no later than August 15, 2022 when employment starts at the beginning of Fall 2022 term.

Applications are accepted only through Interfolio here: .

Deadlines: The deadline for application is 11:59 p.m. CST on October 10, 2021. Application review will begin October 11, 2021.

Required Documentation:

  • Cover letter including personal statement
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Names and contact information for three academic recommenders
  • Research statement
  • Teaching statement and unedited course evaluations (if available)
  • Diversity statement (diversity, equity, and inclusion are growing in importance as benchmarks of success for faculty at Vanderbilt. Tell us some specific ways that you attend to these values and challenges in your work)
  • Graduate/Post-graduate Transcripts (official)
  • Writing sample (@ 30 pp.)

Questions: Direct questions to Laurel Schneider, Chair, Department of Religious Studies,

Job: Chair in Catholic Studies, University of Kentucky

The College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Kentucky invites applications for the endowed Cottrill-Rolfes Chair in Catholic Studies to begin August 2022. Competitive applicants will have the rank of Full Professor or its equivalent in scholarship and experience, and a strong reputation related to some aspect of Catholic Studies. The endowment describes Catholic Studies as “the study of the history, literature, philosophy, music, culture, ideology, politics, institutions and traditions of Roman Catholicism.” We are interested in applications from a range of diverse disciplinary approaches as well as different topics as they relate to Catholicism, such as art, architecture, liturgy, gender, race, religious conversion, biblical exegesis, the environment, and more. The scope of the position is global. Applications from scholars who specialize in inter-faith relations and the complexities of cross-cultural encounters are welcome. In concert with faculty across the College and the World Religions program, the Cottrill-Rolfes Chair will develop and implement an active program in Catholic Studies, with the understanding that the activities of the Chair should neither promote nor inhibit the Catholic religion. This will include programming for lectures and events of interest to the larger community on topics extending beyond the Chair’s immediate area of expertise.

The University of Kentucky is an R1 Research University with significant library holdings in Religious Studies, especially in the area of Christianity. Hebrew, Greek, Latin, and Arabic, and an array of modern languages are available for undergraduate study. The College of Arts and Sciences has a growing community of internationally recognized scholars with interests in Islamic Studies, Jewish Studies, biblical studies and archaeology, pre-modern Christian history and art, Asian and South Asian religions, vernacular religion, mythology, and Indigenous religions, as well as in the religious dimensions of sociology, anthropology, psychology, gender and women’s studies, and symbolic systems. The student population and faculty are diverse and committed to internationalization. The successful candidate will foster collegial relations and opportunities for intellectual explorations across disciplinary boundaries.

Interested scholars should apply online at: Applications should include the following: 1.) a letter that includes a brief description of research interests, prospective projects, and relevant teaching experience, brief proposals for courses in Catholic Studies or Religious Studies, ideas about a lecture series on the theme “Catholicism and…” (upload as Cover Letter);  2.) a curriculum vitae; 3.) a recent, representative article or chapter; in the case of a major digital project for which the applicant is a primary PI, please send a link (upload as Specific Request 1); and 4.) a statement on inclusivity (upload as Specific Request 2). As a college and university, we are strongly committed to creating an inclusive and effective teaching, learning, and working environment for all.  In one to two pages, applicants should reflect on their commitments, approaches, and insights related to inclusion, diversity, and equity. In addition, please provide the names and contact information for three references when prompted in the academic profile. The search committee will use this information when soliciting recommendation letters.

Review of applications will begin on October 15, 2021. Queries may be addressed to Prof. Abigail Firey, Director of World Religions; email

The University of Kentucky is an Equal Opportunity Employer and encourages applications from veterans, individuals with disabilities, women, African Americans, and all minorities. Applications from international scholars are welcome.

Conference: Regulating Religions? Legal and social status in contemporary Europe–23-24 Sept 2021

International Conference

Regulating Religions? Legal and social status in contemporary Europe will be held on 23-25 September 2021.  It is organized by the EUREL network (EUrope – RELigion: and the Institute of Sociology of the University of Porto.

The EUREL project, established around 20 years ago, results from an international network of European researchers in the fields of Sociology and Law, focused on the changes in the relationship between religion, State and society in Europe.

The project is coordinated by Anne-Laure Zwilling (U. Strasbourg) and in Portugal is represented by Helena Vilaça and Maria João Oliveira (IS-UP). Every two years the EUREL network holds an international conference which will take place in Portugal this year.

The international conference will take place in a hybrid format. In-person sessions will happen at the Faculty of Arts of the University of Porto and be simultaneously broadcasted via Zoom-Colibri.

Given the current health restrictions, there will be limitations on the number of people who can attend in person.

We remind you that, although participation is free of charge, prior registration is mandatory. For registration and other information concerning the event, please access the following link:

Best regards,

The Local Committee of the Conference

CFP for Journal Special Issue on Religion and Bioethics

Dr Tyler Tate from Oregon Health and Science University, United States, and Dr. Hossein Godazgar from University of Warwick are editing the Research Topic of ‘Religion and Bioethics: A Sociological Perspective’ for the journal Frontiers in Sociology.  The call for papers and details are available here:

I would be grateful if you could also circulate this to researchers and/or practitioners who might be interested in the sociological study of the intersectionality between religion and bioethics.

Submission deadlines are 31 January 2022 (for Abstracts) and 04 July 2022 (for full manuscripts). Please note that we will pursue a thorough scientific peer-review process. We look forward to receiving your abstracts and full manuscripts.

About this Research Topic

Both ‘religion’ and ‘morality’ were central themes in sociology as practised by its pioneers in the late-19th and early-20th centuries. However, their central position as major fields of social scientific enquiry and attention has been lost over time. This Research Topic is an attempt to recover these traditional, long-forgotten, but vital, parts of sociology. In doing so, it focuses on the conceptual interrelationship between the meanings of ‘religion’ and ‘bioethics’ at the ‘first-order’, everyday ‘lay’ or ‘folk’ level in various social contexts across the world from countries of the ‘global north’ to those of the ‘global south’ and from so-called ‘Abrahamic religions’, i.e. Judaism, Christianity and Islam, to ‘non-Abrahamic religions’, such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Shintoism, Confucianism, Sikhism and the so-called ‘indigenous religions’ of animism, naturalism and totemism.

This Research Topic presupposes that the meanings of both ‘religion’, as highlighted by Beckford (2003), and ‘bioethics’, as emphasised by Nietzsche (1990) and Charles Taylor (1985) in relation to the definition of ‘morality’, are by no means unitary, universal, fixed and homogenous. Their definitions change across various social contexts in time and space. As Steven Lukes (2010), referring to Hacking (1999), stresses in relation to ‘morality’, contingency, nominalism and externalism are essential components of both ‘religion’ and ‘bioethics’. Therefore, it would be fascinating to explore and understand how and to what extent the understandings of ‘religion’ (and its cognate terms, including ‘non-religion’) and ‘bioethics’ (in relation to themes such as cloning, abortion, organ transplantation and blood transfusion, sexual health and orientation, the value of life, death, killing and letting die) intersect each other in various social contexts.

Openings for Research Associates / Visiting Faculty

HARVARD DIVINITY SCHOOL announces five full-time positions as Research Associate and Visiting Faculty for 2022-23 in its Women’s Studies and Religion Program.  Proposals for book-length projects utilizing both religion and gender as central categories of analysis and focusing on any religion are welcomed. Salary for 2022-23 will be $60,000. 

Completed applications are due online by October 15, 2021.  Applicants must have received their PhD by October 1, 2021.  Please see our website ( for more information.

The Women’s Studies in Religion Program was founded in 1973 to explore the fundamental role played by religious traditions in defining roles for women and men.  Research on religion and gender sheds light on questions about the changing roles of women both inside religious communities and in broader public spheres.  The Program’s goal is the production of new primary research addressing these and related issues and the dispersal of that information through courses, publications, and public programs.


Tracy Wall

Job Opening: Research Associate on Gender & Religion in Foreign Policy

Aston University’s Department of Politics, History and International Relations is looking for a research associate to support research in the following project “The international campaign to free Asia Bibi: A pilot study on intersections of gender and religion in foreign policy”. T

he main tasks of the successful candidate will include the collection and analysis of qualitative data on the campaign, tracing domestic developments in Pakistan related to the case, and contributing to the preparation of project outputs and dissemination events.

The successful candidate will need to have experience in conducting qualitative research, experience of research  and an interest in issues of religious minorities, women’s rights and foreign policy are desirable.

We are looking for a research associate that can support the project one day per week for seven months, but number of work days per week and contract length could be handled flexibly.

The position is perfect for a part-time researcher or teaching associate who would like to increase their hours. The work can be conducted remotely, therefore presence in Birmingham is not essential.

For more information, please contact Dr Anne Jenichen and visit

In Memoriam: Professor Gary Bouma, MDiv, MA, PhD, AM (1942-2021)

Dear Colleagues:
We are saddened by the news that Gary Bouma died at his home in Melbourne last Thursday morning, 19 August, in the company of his wife, Patricia. He was 79. After falling and breaking his leg in February, when he was otherwise fit and well, Gary experienced a number of debilitating medical conditions and, in the midst of all that, the death of his beloved son.

Gary was a long-time participant in international sociology and a leader in the sociology of religion in Australia.  His massive academic legacy includes over 30 books and 360 articles—with many still forthcoming. His most recent book, authored by Andrew Singleton, Anna Halafoff, Mary Lou Rasmussen and Gary, on Freedoms, Faiths and Futures: Teenage Australians on Religion, Sexuality and Diversity, arising from an ARC Discovery Project, was published in April this year. As well as landmark works on the sociology of Australian religion, including Australian Soul, he reshaped Australian understanding of religion in numerous areas including interreligious understanding, human rights, religion and youth, education and public policy. His work reached far beyond the academy, with notable policy work including the Human Rights Commission’s 2011 inquiry into Freedom of Religion and Belief in 21st Century Australia; chairing the Board of Directors for The Parliament of the World’s Religions in 2009; and numerous interventions in public debate in areas such as religious diversity, gender and sexuality, Islamophobia and the place of religion in schools.

Gary came to Australia in 1979, joining Monash University, where he remained for the next 42 years, becoming Emeritus Professor in 2008, after serving in numerous roles including Professor of Sociology, DVC Research, and Head of School. In 2005, he was appointed UNESCO Chair in Inter-Cultural and Inter-Religious Relations. He led the Australian node of the University of Ottawa-based Religion and Diversity Project, and was a leading figure in other distinguished national and international research collaborations. In 2013, he was awarded AM for services to Sociology, to interreligious relations and to the Anglican Church of Australia.

He was also an ordained minister in the Anglican church and at the time of his death was Honorary Assistant Priest at St Johns, East Malvern.

Gary’s funeral will be on Thursday, 26 August at 11:00 am AEST (that is 9:00 pm Wednesday, 25 August US EST) and will be live-streamed. The State of Victoria’s COVID regulations currently restrict the number of people attending funerals to ten, plus those required for the conduct of the funeral.  The link to the funeral is . Scroll down to find Gary.

Waikato Islamic Studies Review – Call for Papers

Waikato Islamic Studies Review – Call for Papers  :

On behalf of the University of Waikato Islamic Studies Group, I warmly invite submissions of papers which examine Islam in the widest sense to the Waikato Islamic Studies Review for publication consideration.

Articles can be as short as 2000 words and up to a maximum of 5000. For full details regarding paper guidelines and submissions and the Waikato Islamic Studies Review please see:

If you have any questions please feel free to contact me asap if you think that you might like your work considered; the next edition is due for publication in September or November 2021. 

Kind regards,

Abdullah Drury
Editor: Waikato Islamic Studies Review