Freedom to Flourish: Is Religious Freedom Necessary for Peace, Prosperity, and Democracy?

Since its inception in 2011 the Religious Freedom Project has conducted a wide ranging conversation among policymakers, scholars, and the media on the meaning and value of religious freedom. This conversation has yielded a great deal of light, and, truth be told, a fair amount of heat (religious freedom is, after all, a controversial subject).

A two-day capstone conference looked back over the project's first three years, and looked forward as well. It addressed the relationship between religious freedom and human flourishing. Top experts engaged in a series of rich and dynamic discussions around the proposition that religious freedom is not only a universal right but also a universal good—a key ingredient in the flourishing of individuals and societies everywhere.
Wednesday, October 9, 2013

10:00 - 10:15am: Welcome & Introductions
Thomas Farr, Religious Freedom Project

10:15 - 11:15am: Keynote Address: Why Everybody Everywhere Has a Right to Religious Freedom
Nicholas Wolterstorff, Yale University

11:15am - 12:00pm: Response
Stephen Macedo, Princeton University

12:00 - 12:30pm: Lunch

12:30 - 1:30pm: Conversation on Religious Freedom and Societal Flourishing
Stephen Macedo, Princeton University
Nicholas Wolterstorff Yale University
Timothy Shah (moderator), Religious Freedom Project

1:45 - 3:15pm: Panel One: Does Every Person Everywhere—Religious or Not—Need Religious Freedom?
Fr. Stephen Fields, SJ (moderator), Georgetown University
Kristine Kalanges, University of Notre Dame
Christopher Tollefsen, University of South Carolina
Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite, Chicago Theological Seminary

3:30 - 5:00pm: Panel Two: Do Democracies Everywhere Need Religious Freedom to be Liberal -- and to Last?
John DiIulio, University of Pennsylvania
Marci Hamilton, Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University
Mark Lilla, Columbia University
Daniel Philpott (moderator), Religious Freedom Project
Mark Rienzi, Catholic University of America

Thursday, October 10, 2013

9:00 - 9:15am: Welcome & Introductions

9:15 - 10:45am: Panel One: Does Religious Freedom Undermine Terrorism and Conflict and Foster Secure Societies?

Thomas Farr (moderator), Religious Freedom Project
Brian Grim, Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life
Will Inboden, University of Texas at Austin
John Owen, University of Virginia
Tamara Wittes, Brookings Institution

11:00am - 12:30pm: Keynote Conversation: Whither the First Freedom? Debating the Current State and Possible Future of Religious Liberty in America
E.J. Dionne, Washington Post
Ross Douthat, New York Times
Ken Starr, President, Baylor University
Jane Little (moderator), Independent Journalist

12:30 - 1:00pm: Lunch

1:00 - 2:30pm: Panel Two: Does Religious Freedom Promote Economic Freedom and Prosperity Everywhere?
Ilan Alon, Rollins College
William Inboden (moderator), Religious Freedom Project
Timur Kuran, Duke University
Ian Linden, Tony Blair Faith Foundation
Rebecca Shah, Berkley Center

2:45 - 4:15pm: Panel Three: What is the Evidence that Religious Freedom is Necessary for the Political Success of Free Societies?
Tony Gill, University of Washington
Daniel Philpott, Religious Freedom Project
Nukhet Sandal, Ohio University
Ani Sarkissian, Michigan State University
Timothy Shah (moderator), Religious Freedom Project

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