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David Hollenbach

Senior Fellow

Walsh School of Foreign Service and Department of Theology and Religious Studies

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Rev. David Hollenbach, S.J., is the Pedro Arrupe Distinguished Research Professor in the Walsh School of Foreign Service, a senior fellow at the Berkley Center, and an affiliated professor in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at Georgetown University. His teaching and research deal with human rights, religious and ethical responses to humanitarian crises, and religion in political life from the standpoint of Catholic social thought, theology, and the social sciences. His books include Humanity in Crisis: Ethical and Religious Response to Refugees (2019), Driven from Home: Protecting the Rights of Forced Migrants (2010) The Global Face of Public Faith: Politics, Human Rights, and Christian Ethics (2003), and The Common Good and Christian Ethics (2002). He has taught often at Hekima University College in Nairobi, Kenya, and he collaborates with Jesuit Refugee Service. From 2020 to 2022 he is a distinguished research associate with the Kellogg Institute for International Studies at the University of Notre Dame.

Before coming to Georgetown he was the director of the Center for Human Rights and International Justice at Boston College, where he held the University Chair in Human Rights and International Justice. He has also taught at the Jesuit Philosophy Institute in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and at the East Asian Pastoral Institute in Manila, Philippines. He has conducted workshops for parliamentarians and for church leaders in South Sudan on human rights in their newly independent country. 

Rev. Hollenbach is the author of numerous works, his best known being The Common Good and Christian Ethics (Cambridge University Press, 2002). His other books include Driven from Home: Protecting the Rights of Forced Migrants (Georgetown University Press, 2010), The Global Face of Public Faith: Politics, Human Rights, and Christian Ethics (Georgetown University Press, 2003), and Refugee Rights: Ethics Advocacy, and Africa (Georgetown University Press, 2008, as editor). His most recent book, Humanity in Crisis: Ethical and Religious Responses to Refugees, was published in fall 2019 by Georgetown University Press. 

He is the past president of the Catholic Theological Society of America and the Society of Christian Ethics. He assisted the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in drafting their 1986 pastoral letter Economic Justice for All: Catholic Social Teaching and the U.S. Economy. His awards include the Civitas Dei Medal from Villanova University and the Marianist Award from the University of Dayton for Catholic contributions to intellectual life. He received the John Courtney Murray Award for outstanding contributions to theology from the Catholic Theological Society of America, as well as a number of honorary degrees. 

Rev. Hollenbach obtained his Ph.D. from Yale University and his B.S. from St. Joseph’s University; he also earned his M.A. and Ph.L. degrees from St. Louis University. He entered the Society of Jesus in 1964 and was ordained a priest in 1971.