Skip to 0 minutes and 13 secondsWelcome to this course. I am Anna Triandafyllidou, and together with my colleague Tina Magazzini, we will be your educators in discussing how religion is governed across the world and how do different countries deal with religious diversity. We will look into countries in Europe like France, Germany, the UK, but also Spain or Bulgaria and how they deal with their religious diversity, with what institutions, what norms, and what practises. But we will also look into the Middle East and North Africa, for instance Morocco, Tunisia, Turkey, Lebanon, and in faraway places like Asia. We will look into India and Indonesia and Malaysia.

Skip to 0 minutes and 54 secondsSo we will try to learn from the different regimes that these countries apply in governing the relationship between the state authorities and the religious communities and their institutions. Religion is a very important aspect of individual and also public life. It often gives rise to different challenges that can refer to everyday things like dietary requirements, places and times for praying, access and creation of new worship places, burial customs and cemeteries of different kinds, and how different countries govern these both for the majority group, but also for religious minorities.

Skip to 1 minute and 36 secondsIn this course, we will first look into the history of each country and how usually the history of nation formation and, in particular, for countries, for instance, in Asia, but also in the Middle East or North Africa, how colonialism helps to shape the way in which they deal with religion. We will look into Christian majority countries, Muslim majority countries, but also into countries with a very pronounced religious diversity, like for instance, India. The course will review the institutional arrangements, it will review small or bigger crisis, contested issues and how they were solved, and we will conclude highlighting important good practises that can, in a way, provide guidance for everyday challenges in different countries. Stay tuned in this course.

Skip to 2 minutes and 29 secondsWe want to hear from you. We want to hear from your experiences what is done in your own place of where you live, in your city or in your country.

Welcome to this course!

The role of religion in everyday life is an important challenge across the world and even more so when a country’s population includes several religious communities.

This course is part of the research project GREASE: Radicalisation Secularism and the Governance of Religious Diversity: Bringing together European and Asian Perspectives funded by the European Commission, Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement number 770640. The content of this MOOC represents only the views of the GREASE consortium and is its sole responsibility. The European Commission does not accept any responsibility for use that may be made of the information it contains.

The GREASE project consortium brings together researchers and eminent scholars from Europe, South & Southeast Asia, Asia Pacific and the MENA region. Together we are investigating how religious diversity is governed in 23 countries. Comparing norms, laws and practices, we hope to ascertain what is useful (or not useful) in preventing religious radicalisation. Our research also sheds light on different societal approaches to accommodating religious minorities and migrants. GREASE aims to deepen our understanding of religious diversity governance, emphasising insights for countering radicalisation.

This course benefits from expert interviews, materials and case studies generously provided by the GREASE partners, covering four different world regions: Europe, the MENA region, south and southeast Asia and the Australia Pacific, encouraging us to learn from one another.

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This video is from the free online course:

Governing Religion: European Challenges and Asian Approaches

European University Institute (EUI)