ONLINE COURSE: Tensions of Transdisciplinarity: A Master Class on Religious Communities and Sustainable Development

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Course periodMay 31, 2021 - June 11, 2021 Session I
Category Religion, Ethics & Law
Course levelsMaster, Ph.D.
LanguageEnglish
Class size

max. 30 participants: 10 from Germany and 20 from Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa

Credits and certificate

Participants can receive up to 5 ECTS credit points upon successful completion of the online course.

Application deadline April 19, 2021, or when participant quota is reached Application period over.
Course fee0.00 Euro | (excl. program fee and discounts)

DAAD scholarship - the program fee will be waived.

 

Please see the section "Requirements" for details on the application.

Description

In recent years, a highly transdisciplinary field has emerged from politics, development and religious practice, and science that examines the role of religious communities in processes of sustainable development under the heading of 'religion and sustainable development'. A particular characteristic of this dynamically growing field is that a considerable part of the knowledge production is done by policy and development practice actors as well as by religious communities themselves. Policymakers and practitioners in development cooperation have recognized religion as a socially transformative factor that can have an impact (positive or negative) on sustainable development processes. Religious communities and religious organizations are increasingly aware of their role as development actors. In this context, fundamental questions of scientific transdisciplinarity arise: How can science connect with politics and practice, as well as develop relevance for practice? Moreover, how can development practice repeatedly question and adjust its own strategies in dialogue with science?

The intensive online course: “Tensions of Transdisciplinarity: A Master Class on Religious Communities and Sustainable Development” is aimed at M.A. students and Ph.D. candidates from African and German universities. It follows the concept of research-based learning that has been implemented at HU Berlin for several years (see https://bolognalab.hu-berlin.de). Furthermore, it integrates various methodological classes and lectures from international academic scholars, to promote students’ empirical research skills and their ability to communicate empirical research results to a wider audience. The online course is organized by the Research Programme on Religious Communities and Sustainable Development (RCSD) at HU Berlin, in cooperation with international partners (www.rcsd.hu-berlin.de).

The Master Class will be held entirely as an online event.

Syllabus

Preliminary Syllabus (PDF)

Course structure

The online course is divided into three interlinked modules: Module M1: Advanced course in content and methods in the empirical study of religious communities; Module M2: Research-based learning; Module M3: Communicating scientific research results. In all three modules, the question of transdisciplinarity and its implementation is a central cross-cutting theme.

Participants will be supported in the concretization and implementation of their own research projects in the field of religion and development. They will get to know important empirical research methods on religion as well as crucial contents presented by high-ranking scholars in the field of religion and development through the master class.

 

Preliminary schedule:

Preliminary Timetable: “Tensions of Transdisciplinarity. A Master Class on Religious Communities and Sustainable Development” at HU Berlin

31.05.-11.06.2021

Day 1: Monday, 31/05/2021

Time

Title

 

9.00 – 10.30 

Welcome & Introduction 

 

 

11.00 – 12.30

M1-1a | Lecture: “Tensions of Transdisciplinarity: Methodological and Theoretical Points of Departure in the Study of Religious Communities and Sustainable Development”

 

 

13.30 – 15.00

M1-1b | Seminar session: “Tensions of Transdisciplinarity: Religion and Sustainable Development as Transdisciplinary Field”

 

 

15.30 – 16.30

M2-1 | Introduction to the research groups and allocation of participants to group 

Each group will be accompanied by one summer school lecturer throughout the course period

 

 

 

 

Day 2: Tuesday 01/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

9.00 – 10.30 

M1-2a | Lecture: "Ecological Sustainability in Muslim Communities – A South African Perspective" (digital lecture)

 

 

11.00 – 12.30

M1-2b | Seminar session: Ecological Sustainability as Islamic religious knowledge

 

 

13.30 – 15.00

M1-3a | Research methods I: An overview over qualitative research methods in the study of religious communities: ethnography and the ethnographer’s (problematic) perspective 

 

 

15.30 – 16.30

M2-2a | Research groups – participants plan their joint empirical project (‚Lehrforschungsprojekt‘)

 

18.00 – 20.00 

International Department evening: informing about HU Berlin and possibilities to study in Germany

 

Tag 3: Wednesday 02/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

9.00 – 10.30 

M1-4a | Lecture: Religion and Development in the Middle East

 

 

11.00 – 12.30

M1-4b | Seminar: Religion, Peace and Dialogue in the Middle East

 

 

13.30 – 15.00

M1-3b | Research methods II: Interview methods, Participating observation

 

 

15.30 – 16.30

M2-2b | Research groups – participants plan their joint empirical project (‚Lehrforschungsprojekt‘)

Day 4: Thursday 03/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

9.00 – 10.30 

M1-5a | Lecture: "Who is speaking on Religion and sustainable Development? – Decolonizing theory and practice!”

 

 

11.00 – 12.30

M1-5b | Seminar: Approaches to decoloniality

 

 

13.30 – 15.00

M1-3c | Research methods III: Data analysis

 

 

15.30 – 16.30

M2-2c | Research groups – participants plan their joint empirical project (‚Lehrforschungsprojekt‘)

Day 5: 

Friday 04/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

9.00 – 10.30 

M1-6 | Lecture: Coalitions for development? Ethics of Ubuntu, Catholic Social Teaching and Confucianism in Dialogue

 

 

 

 

 

 

13.30 – 15.00

M1-3d | Research methods IV: Advanced course on Research ethics

 

 

15.30 – 16.30

M2-2d | Research groups – participants plan their joint empirical project (‚Lehrforschungsprojekt‘)

 

 

 

Day 6: 

Saturday 05/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

 

 

 

 

 

13.30 – 18.00

M2-2f | Research groups – participants plan their joint empirical project (‚Lehrforschungsprojekt‘)

Day 7: 

Sunday 06/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

whole day 

M2-3 | Research day – participants conduct their own small-scale empirical research projects

Day 8: Monday 07/06/2020

09.00-10.30

M1-7a | Lecture: "Gender Justice between Theory and Practice of Religious Communities"

 

 

11.00-12.30

M1-7b | Seminar session: "Gender Justice between Theory and Practice of Religious Communities"

 

 

13.30-17.00

M2-4 | Research results day – participants evaluate their empirical data and prepare a small presentation

 

Day 8: Tuesday 08/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

8.30 – 11.00 

M1-8a | Public keynote:

 

M1-8b | Public keynote:

 

11.30 – 13.00

M2-5a | Open forum: public presentation of participants’ own research projects (e.g. master/PhD theses)

 

14.30 – 16.30

M2-5b | Open forum: public presentation of participants’ own research projects (e.g. master/PhD theses)

 

17.00 – 18.00 

M3-1a | Public lecture series Religious Leaders’ Perspectives on Development: „The Lutheran Bapedi Church – Decolonial developments since 1890“

 

Day 9: Wednesday 09/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

8.30 – 11.00

M1- 8c | Public Keynote:

 

M1-8d | Public keynote: Mission histories. On the relationship between conversion and "development" in the history of Christian missions

 

11.30 – 13.00

M2-5c | Open forum: public presentation of participants’ own research projects (e.g. master/PhD theses)

 

14.30 – 16.30

M3 – 2a | Development practice insights

 

 

17.00 – 18.00 

M3-1b | Public lecture series Religious Leaders‘ Perspectives on Development: „Women Leadership in a Ghanaian Pentecostal Church“

 

Day 10: Thursday 10/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

8.30 – 11.00 

M1-8e | Public keynote: The engagement of Poverty Alleviation in Buddhist Communities

 

M1-8f | Public keynote: Religion and Development – what do we know, what don’t we know? Perspectives for further engagement in an emerging sub-discipline

 

11.30 – 13.00

M2-6a | Presentation session: research groups present their projects and results

All lecturers

14.30 – 16.30

M2-6b | Presentation session: research groups present their projects and results

All lecturers

17.00 – 20.00 

M3-1c | Public lecture series. Religious Leaders’ Perspectives on Development: „The role of religious communities in fostering social cohesion in a South African Townships“

 

Day 11: Friday 11/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

8.30 – 09.15 

M3-2b | Public Policy & Practice keynote: „What is the added value of faith-based development cooperation? The case of Brot für die Welt“

 

 

09.15 – 10.30

M3-2c | Public panel discussion: Revisiting our knowledge and ideas about Religion and Development – how to proceed?

N.N.; N.N.; N.N.

11.00 – 12.30

M1-9 | World Café: Pathways to future collaboration

 

13.30 – 16.30

Results, feedback and closing remarks

 

 

 

Day 12: Saturday 12/06/2021

Time

Title

Lecturer

 

Departure

 


Language skills English: B2 - proof will be required
Motivation Letter about one page in English
Student Profile

M.A. students and Ph.D. candidates with an academic background and a strong interest in religious studies, theology, sociology, and development studies or related subjects.

 

Documents required to upload for application:

  • Cover letter: The cover letter should demonstrate your prior exposure to or experience with the academic or practical field of religion and development, your motivation to participate in this course, and your personal research interest in this field. Please outline a preliminary research question for a small empirical field work project related to the topic of religious communities and sustainable development to be conducted during the course in Berlin. Please also explain how the participation in the summer school will benefit your future studies or career. If any, please also state your religious affiliation as the course profits from a religiously diverse group.
  • CV
  • Copy of valid student ID.
  • Copy of valid passport (to be submitted by 01 May only in case of an in-sight event in Berlin)

For PhD candidates: in addition to the points mentioned above, a short research outline of your PhD project on religion and sustainable development should be included in the cover letter. Please note that PhD candidates must work in the field of religion and development in order to qualify for the course.

Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Gräb

Ms. Juliane Stork

Ms. Marie-Luise Frost

Mr. Philipp Öhlmann

CoordinatorPierre Steuer/ Carmen Opolski/ Sanja Müssig
Contact detailsInternational Department
Unter den Linden 6
10999 Berlin
Germany

huwisu@hu-berlin.de