‘Research Methods for the Study of Religion’ : new on-line resource

Another message from David Butler, the GORABS chair:

GORABS is pleased to be asked to announce that a new research training resource, primarily aimed at postgraduate students, has now gone live.

‘Research Methods for the Study of Religion’ is an on-line resource, covering a wide range of key topics in this field, from research design, and the politics and ethics of research, to issues in the use of various quantitative and qualitative methods. Developed from the experience of an intensive training workshop for doctoral students run in conjunction with the AHRC/ESRC Religion and Society programme, the content on the site includes discussion papers, exercises, bibliographies, discussion questions and links to other relevant on-line material. We hope that the site will meet the need both of individual researchers looking for resources on particularly methodological issues, and lecturers wanting source material to use in teaching methods courses.

The site can be found at http://www.kent.ac.uk/religionmethods/index.html

Geographies of Religion and Belief Systems: David E. Sopher Award


The purpose of the David E. Sopher New Scholar Award is to promote intellectual enquiry from new scholars into geographies of religions and belief systems through the presentation of papers at the AAG meeting. Papers will be judged on potential contribution to the field of Geography of Religions and Belief Systems, organization, and written composition.


Both graduate students and untenured faculty who are not serving on the GORABS board can apply for the award. Award: The amount for the 2012 award is a travel grant of $250. The recipient will also be given an official certificate at the AAG awards luncheon.


A check will be disbursed to the winner at the 2012 Geography of Religions and Belief Systems annual business meeting at the AAG event.


The paper and application form must be emailed to the GORABS chair in rich text or Microsoft Word format by Feb. 3, 2012. The paper must subsequently be presented at the national AAG meeting, though it does not have to be in a GORABS sponsored session. A panel of previous GORABS chairs will judge the papers and determine a recipient. The winner will be announced in time to attend the awards luncheon with a GORABS representative. GORABS reserves the right to not make an award in a given year.

Apply by html or Microsoft Word.

Geography of Religion and Belief Systems: Association of American Geographers, Annual Meeting 2012 (New York): Annual Lecturer

A message from our GORABS Chair, David Butler:

I have pleasure in announcing Professor Ceri Peach will be our GORABS Guest Lecturer at AAG 2012, where he will offer a lecture provisionally entitled ‘Islam and the Art of Mosque construction in Western Europe’. This promises to be fascinating topic which will, no doubt, draw attention to GORABS as a speciality AAG group, which can only be a positive development.

This annual lecture session will be our GORABS highlighted session with the AAG. I also hope to advertise the Sopher Student Award shortly.

I would be greatly obliged if all paper session organizers (both those who have received GORABS sponsorship and those GORABS members who are participating in related non-GORABS sponsored sessions) could send me an update on your planned AAG 2012 activities, as the board need to submit timetabling requests, vis-a-vis our annual lecture, annual business meeting, and sponsored sessions to prevent any undue stress shuttling from one venue to another!

I look forward to any information you may provide. It is only some 18 days before the call for papers closes – this may be extended for a week or so, as it has been in previous recent years – but we need to stay focused as a speciality group.

All best wishes for now,


PhD: Autumn 2011

This autumn, a few things are in the works for the PhD:

  • A new set of articles on geographies of religion and Asian Canadian studies, both theoretical and empirical: more information as these are submitted!
  • Transcribing the interviews that with Cantonese Christians in Metro Vancouver and the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • Focus groups with lay Chinese Christians in Metro Vancouver and the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • Preparing for the American Academy of Religion conference in San Francisco from November 19-22.
If you’d like to be part of a focus group of Chinese Christians on social and political issues in either Vancouver or San Francisco, do contact me at jkhtse@interchange.ubc.ca.  I will be back in San Francisco in late November and early December 2011.