Scandinavian Network for Research in the Study of Religion

The network brings together researchers in the study of religion affiliated with universities and professional communities in Denmark, Sweden and Norway.

Left to right: Confucius statue (China), Artemis of Ephesus (Turkey), Vishnu (Thailand) and the Black Nazarene (Philippines).

Left to right: Confucius statue (China), Artemis of Ephesus (Turkey), Vishnu (Thailand) and the Black Nazarene (Philippines). Photo: Cecilie Endresen

About the network

The network gathers researchers who apply approaches from the study of religionin different fields and take the critical and comparative dimension of the discipline seriously.

The Study of Religion

The study of religion is an academic discipline with a humanistic, comparative and global perspective on religion. The discipline has long traditions in faculties of humanities in Scandinavia, and Scandinavian scholars in the field assert themselves internationally.

The study of religion researchers study religions in the past and present in an academic, critical and cross-cultural perspecive. Religion is analysed as something man-made, as part of society and culture.

Research within the study of religion combines various theories and methods from the humanities and social sciences. The network intends to strengthen the discipline’s comparative core and consider the internal interdisciplinarity and empirical range an academic asset.

International cooperation

The mythical serpent Naga in a Thai Buddhist presentation of the milk churning myth, at the airport in Bangkok.
The mythical serpent Naga in a Thai Buddhist presentation of the milk churning myth, at the airport in Bangkok. Photo: Cecilie Endresen

The researchers affiliated with the network are leading in their field and participate in international research projects. They also contribute to international associations that promote research in the field, including the European Association for the Study of Religions (EASR) and the International Association for the History of Religions (IAHR).

The network is also linked to various national fora such as the Norwegian Association for the History of Religions. The network is intended to support and a supplement to the different national associations representing the discipline with which the members collaborate. 


Front page of the journal CHAOS.
Front page of the journal CHAOS. Photo: CHAOS.

The network originated in the good, long-standing collaboration at Scandinavian level, such as in the peer-reviewed journal CHAOS – the Scandinavian journal of studies of the history of religions – and the annual CHAOS seminar.

The members actively contribute to internationally leading journals devoted to the scholarly and comparative study of religion, such as Religion and Numen - International Review for the History of Religions.

Other peer-reviewed journals in Scandinavia to which the members contribute include DIN - Journal of Religion and Culture and AURA - Journal for  Academic Studies of new religious movements.

The affiliated researchers also publish in a number of other high-level academic journals.


The members of the network disseminate nuanced and research-based knowledge in the media, textbooks, encyclopedias and reference books. An example of collaboration around research-based dissemination  is the award-winning Religion Oracles. Researchers within the study of religion also contribute with academic knowledge to the civil service.

The network wishes to help preserve Norwegian, Danish and Swedish as living academic languages, among other things because of the discipline’s association with the school system, and to contribute to a knowledge-based public debate.


By facilitating research collaborations that strengthen the discipline’s comparative core, the network seeks to strengthen the study of religion at Scandinavian universities and expand the good collaboration that is already taking place.

Tags: Religion, the study of religion, History of religions, Comparative religion, Humanities, Culture, Society, Politics, History
Published Aug. 24, 2022 2:39 PM - Last modified Aug. 24, 2022 2:40 PM