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Religion and World Politics

Woman Putting Vote in Voting Box in Turkey

Around the world, religious actors and institutions have gained political influence, marshaling religious arguments to justify their activities. Moreover, religion has inspired a multitude of world events, ranging from horrific terrorist acts to altruistic responses to the refugee crisis. These resources consider how religious beliefs and actors influence political activity throughout societies.

Our Experts

Shaun Casey headshot

Shaun Casey

Walsh School of Foreign Service

Jocelyne Cesari headshot

Jocelyne Cesari

Senior Fellow
Department of Government

David Hollenbach headshot

David Hollenbach

Senior Fellow
Walsh School of Foreign Service and Department of Theology

Religion and World Politics A-Z Subtopics

Narrow your search for Religion and Development content by selecting from this list of subtopics


Case Study October 5, 2013

Lebanon: The Persistence of Sectarian Conflict

This case study examines the sectarian hostilities between and among Christians, Sunni Muslims, Shi’a Muslims, and Druze that have characterized Lebanese religious, social, and political life since the country’s civil war (1975-1990). In exploring the complex interreligious dynamics of contemporary Lebanese history, the case study deals with five large questions: What are the historical origins of…


Discover the firsthand experiences of faith leaders, activists, and peacebuilding practitioners working on issues ranging from development and education to conflict resolution and foreign policy.

For over a decade, Berkley Center scholars and students have been conducting interviews with individuals working at the intersection of religion and world affairs. These discussions offer unique insights into the inner workings of a wide spectrum of professions touched by religion with interviewees ranging from the highest levels of leadership of international organizations to on-the-ground practitioners. Explore individual interviews here or follow links to our interview collections below:

Blog Posts


American Soldiers Guard Checkpoint in Iraqi Desert

Case Studies on Religion and Conflict

This collection of case studies provides a resource for teachers, students, and policy professionals seeking a deeper understanding of religion's complex role in conflicts around the world. Each case looks at religion not in isolation but as it interacts with other domestic and international factors.
Chinese Women Wearing White and Holding Candles

Religion in China and the United States

From 2006 to 2018 the Religion in China and the United States project sought to promote dialogue, improve understanding, and inform better policy on key issues in U.S.-China relations, including religious freedom and the changing role of religion in world affairs.
Grand Mosque in Brussels, Belgium

The Geopolitics of Religious Soft Power

This project will explore the global impact of transnational religious propagation activities sponsored by several countries in the Middle East which for decades have deployed religion as a form of soft power in pursuit of their evolving foreign policy and other objectives.