Call for Papers: Review of Religious Research

Call for Papers

Review of Religious Research

Review of Religious Research (RRR) publishes empirical social-science research on religion, primarily in sociology and social psychology, and scholarly literature reviews of religious research in these fields. In keeping with its mission, the Religious Research Association (RRA), which sponsors RRR, encourages research that has practical implications for denominations and religious bodies.

RRR provides a forum for applied and academic research across multiple disciplines and approaches, including research on the following topical areas: Clergy; Church programs; Comparative analyses of religious denominations and institutions; Denominational and congregational growth, decline, and vitality; Denominational and congregational conflict, competition, and cooperation; Ethnicity/race and religion; Generational and personal religious change; New religious movements; Personal spiritual and religious beliefs and practices; Religion and attitudes; Religion and family; Religion and gender, Religion and social behavior; Religion and well-being; and Research methodology.

Four types of articles are included in this Call for Papers: Original Research Articles, Research Notes, Review Articles, and Applied Research Abstracts.

Original Research Article: This type of article must be a scholarly and methodologically sophisticated empirical study that provides a comprehensive literature review of the relevant topics related to the research question, and it should have a strong theoretical foundation. The final section of the manuscript should be labeled Conclusions and Implications. A 250-350 word structured Abstract is also required, which contains the following five section headings: Background, Purpose, Methods, Results, and Conclusions and Implications, especially implications for religious organizations and/or practitioners when appropriate. Submitted manuscripts should be double-spaced and be no more than 10,000 words, excluding the title page, abstract, tables, figure captions, and references.

Research Note: This type of article must also be a scholarly and methodologically sophisticated empirical study, but its research question does not have to be theory based, and its literature review should be shorter and more focused. The final section of the manuscript should be labeled Conclusions and Implications. A 250-350 word structured Abstract is also required, which contains the following five section headings: Background, Purpose, Methods, Results, and Conclusions and Implications, especially implications for religious organizations and/or practitioners when appropriate. Submitted manuscripts should be double-spaced and be no more than 7,500 words, excluding the title page, abstract, tables, figure captions, and references.

Review Article: Authors should send an email directly to the RRR Editor-in-Chief (kjflannelly@gmail.com) describing the nature and scope of a proposed literature review to see if it is suitable for publication in RRR before they submit it. The final section of the manuscript should be labeled Conclusions and Implications. A 250-350 word structured Abstract is also required, which contains the following five section headings: Background, Purpose, Methods, Results, and Conclusions and Implications, especially implications for religious organizations and/or practitioners when appropriate. The manuscript should also contain a methodology section that explains how the literature search was conducted and how articles were selected for inclusion in the review. Submitted manuscripts should be double-spaced and be no more than 10,000 words, excluding the title page, abstract, tables, figure captions, and references.

Applied Research Abstract: This type of article consists of a 350-550 word summary (without any references) of an applied research study in the form of a structured abstract with the following five section headings: Background, Purpose, Methods, Results, and Conclusions and Implications, followed by 3-4 keywords. The author(s) may include a footnote that states: (a) whether a complete report exists and how it can be obtained; (b) whether the raw data are available in electronic form and how they can be obtained if the authors wish to make them available to other researchers; and/or (c) whether the authors would like to collaborate with other researchers to further analyze the data and write a full report for possible journal publication as a peer-reviewed manuscript.

Statistical Methodology – Original Research Articles/Research Notes: Quantitative studies should use the most appropriate statistical procedures needed to answer the research question, which include adequate statistical controls (e.g., using demographic variables as covariates that are known to be associated with the religious variables in the study).

Sampling Methodology – Original Research Articles/Research Notes: Both quantitative and qualitative studies should meet sociological standards of representativeness (RRR does not publish studies based solely on convenience sampling). Therefore, qualitative studies published in RRR must employ more systematic and representative approaches to sampling than most qualitative studies do. Convenience sampling can only be employed during the last step in the sampling process, usually after (a) drawing random samples from national or regional surveys, or datasets maintained by religious or other kinds of organizations, or (b) sampling congregations from different cities, states, or regions, or (c) selecting church programs, denominations, congregations, or other social groups that meet specified inclusion criteria.

Editorial Decision-making Process: All four types of manuscripts are initially read by the Editor-in-Chief to determine if they are generally appropriate for publication in RRR based on the guidelines described in this Call for Papers. All manuscripts that are deemed to be appropriate, except Applied Research Abstracts, then undergo blind peer-review by two or more qualified researchers. The Editor-in-Chief is solely responsible for publication decisions about Applied Research Abstracts. Editorial decisions are based on whether a manuscript: (a) poses a clear and valid research question; (b) makes a meaningful contribution to the field; (c) provides appropriate evidence or reasoning for its conclusions; (d) is written in an intelligible fashion in standard English; and (e) conforms to the guidelines described herein.

Manuscript Submission and Processing Fee: Your manuscript should be submitted at https://www.editorialmanager.com/rorr/default.aspx

After you login and select “New Manuscript Submission,” you need to select the appropriate type of article and follow the rest of the directions.

Authors who are not RRA members are required to pay a $35 manuscript processing fee before their manuscript undergoes peer-review. This fee can be paid by joining the RRA, whose annual membership is $35. Authors must submit a cover letter with their submission that covers: (a) RRA membership and this fee; (b) the topical areas with which the manuscript fits; (c) and some other items about the manuscript. Please see the “Cover Letter” and “Fee” sections of the RRR “Instructions for Authors” for more details (https://www.springer.com/journal/13644/submission-guidelines#Instructions%20for%20authors), including examples of cover letters.

Call for contributors to the Routledge International Handbook of Sociology and Christianity

Routledge Publishing is launching the compilation of a new addition to their Routledge International Handbook Series, and we are beginning the search for scholars willing and able to contribute to it. The call for contributors to the Routledge International Handbook of Sociology and Christianity is attached. Would the Religious Research Association (RRA) be willing to place the call on their website or elsewhere in its materials and platforms?  

View this link for more details

Saint Paul School of Theology: Non-Tenure Piosition in Ethics or Church/Society

Saint Paul School of Theology invites applications for a full-time faculty appointment in Ethics or Church and Society at the rank of assistant professor. The position is non-tenured with renewable contract and with possibility of tenure-track in the future.

Candidates for the position must have a Ph.D. or equivalent academic degree in a relevant field. Expertise in racial or ethnic studies is highly desirable, and the cover letter should indicate scholarly and teaching competence in other areas relevant to theological education. Preferred candidates will also have empirical skills for social science research. Successful applicants should be equipped to teach on-campus, hybrid, and online courses. The appointment begins on July 1, 2021.

Saint Paul welcomes nominations for the positions, and the search committee will begin processing applications on November 1, 2020. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. Applicants should send the cover letter, CV, and 3 letters of reference to: search.committee@spst.edu. Questions about the search may be addressed to Jeanne Hoeft, Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean (jhoeft@spst.edu), or Nancy Howell, chair of the search committee (howellnr@spst.edu).

Saint Paul School of Theology (www.spst.edu) is a seminary of The United Methodist Church with campuses in Leawood, KS, and Oklahoma City, OK. The seminary is unique in its relationships with Leawood United Methodist Church of the Resurrection and Oklahoma City University, each of which contributes to the quality of the curriculum. Faculty are committed to rigorous education of students from diverse denominational contexts, to common interests in social justice, and to flexible course delivery. The seminary offers MACM, MATS, MDIV, and DMIN degrees shaped by action/reflection approaches and committed to equipping students for Christian leadership in diverse contexts. In addition to teaching and scholarship, faculty are engaged in service to the seminary, the church, and to peace and justice efforts. Saint Paul School of Theology is an EEOC employer.

September 22, 2020

Postdoctoral Fellowship: Hartford Institute for Religion Research

Appointment Status:  Non-Tenure Track

The Hartford Institute for Religion Research invites applications for a Postdoctoral Fellowship at Hartford Seminary. The appointment is for two years, with the possibility of an extension.  The start date is September 1, 2020 (or as soon as possible) with a project end date of June 30, 2022. We seek applications from scholars whose research addresses issues at the intersection of religion and congregational research. 

Applicants should be scholars of the social scientific study of religion or religious studies, and experience with religious congregations as organizations is essential.  However, scholars whose interests are in other disciplines such as cultural studies with a focus on race, class or gender in the United States are also encouraged to apply. 

Fellows will be expected to conduct fieldwork, to know ethnographic methods, to be proficient in both office and research software (either quantitative or qualitative), to stay abreast of current literature, and to function as part of a working research team with four research staff and national teams of researchers, scholars and graduate assistants. Fellows will also be encouraged to pursue their own research interests within the bounds of the project and to create their own written products for publication or presentation at professional conferences.  Fellows will be expected to teach one course per academic year at Hartford Seminary.

Applications received by August 24, 2020 will be given full consideration; however, the search will remain open until suitable candidates are found.

Basic Qualifications: Should have received the Ph.D. within the last 5 years in a social science or humanities field with interests in congregations or other religious organizations, but will accept applications from ABD students with expected graduation date by May 2021. Experience in ethnographic methods preferred. Must be able to work with diverse constituencies, be able to conduct research on-site at various congregations, demonstrate technical proficiency, and be able to communicate well both orally and in writing. The successful candidates must demonstrate the ability to work both independently and with teams of researchers in a time-sensitive project.

Questions concerning the position should be addressed to Dr. Scott Thumma

Salary $50,000. Medical benefits and housing are included.

A complete application includes a cover letter outlining relevant education and training experience, an abbreviated CV, and names and contact information for three references.   Please send to Dr. Scott Thumma (sthumma@hartsem.edu ).  Applications received by 8/24/2020 will receive full consideration.

Funding opportunity: call for proposals on gratitude to God

Biola University, with the help of a grant from the John Templeton Foundation and under the direction of Peter Hill and Robert Emmons, welcomes proposals from various disciplines to investigate questions that concern gratitude to God*. Letters of intent are due January 29th, 2020.

Proposals may be for projects that utilize the methodologies of the psychological sciences, philosophy, theology, or religious studies. Empirical projects may be multi-method, qualitative, theoretical, cross-cultural, employ behavioral measures, or incorporate developmental approaches (though none of these are required). For the empirical projects, experi­mental methodologies are encouraged. There are four separate award competitions: (1) empirical large grants, (2) empirical early career grants, (3) non-empirical large grants, and (4) non-empirical early career grants. Total funding available for this RFP is $2.8M. For more instructions and more information, visit www.gratitudetogod.com. Queries may be sent to rachel.smith@biola.edu.

We anticipate proposals for empirical and non-empirical projects that address one or more of the questions listed below:

  • What is the basic structure of gratitude to God? How does gratitude to God differ from gratitude to others?
  • Why and how do people express gratitude to God or fail to?
  • How is cosmic gratitude an alternative to gratitude to God?
  • What functions does gratitude to God serve?

*For the sake of this proposal and the anticipated projects that we hope it generates, we are using the term “God” to encompass the supreme God of monotheistic traditions, as well as other supernatural or superhuman beings with agency and powers (gods, spirits, ghosts, saints), whether personal or impersonal, with capacities to “make things happen or prevent them from happening, especially obtaining goods and avoiding bads” (Smith, 2017, p. 22). The phrase “personal or impersonal” implies that the superhuman powers may or may not be believed to possess consciousness, intentions, feelings, desires and other properties of the mind. We use the term “cosmic gratitude” in the RFP to depict the state that is felt by people who are inclined to feel gratitude for things not plausibly attributable to human agency nor to a personal supernatural or superhuman agent (Roberts, 2014).