Established: 2006        Number of members: 250


Luca Ozzano (University of Turin, Italy)

Members of the steering committee

Eva-Maria Euchner (Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich, Germany)
Matthias Kortmann (TU Dortmund University, Germany)
Frederic Strack (Science Po Paris, France)
Sultan Tepe (University of Illinois Chicago, USA)


Matthias Kortmann

Newsletter editor

Sultan Tepe


The background to the founding of the Standing Group in February 2006 was that many political scientists and international relations experts agreed that many religious leaders and organisations are also significant political actors, operating in domestic and/or international contexts. More generally, since the end of the Cold War in 1989, religion regularly impacts upon politics both in Europe and elsewhere. While religion’s precise influence or impact differs from country to country and international context to international context, it is often politically significant in one of two ways: encouraging, or helping to rectify, political conflicts. This indicates that religion has important functions serving to engender and/or significantly influence people’s and group values. Consequently, religion has a significant impact on both domestic and international politics; often in practice these spheres interact. In short, fully to understand many current political outcomes – both in Europe and elsewhere – it is now crucial to take into account the variable effects of religious actors in many political contexts.

Aims and objectives

Reflecting these general concerns, the Standing Group exists to encourage the development of a network of interested researchers. The key aim is to try to answer questions about the political impact of religious actors and to disseminate research findings. A crucial way to achieve these objectives is to submit regular proposals for relevant Sections, Panels and Workshops at both the ECPR Joint Sessions and General Conferences. The Convenor of the Standing Group has directed numerous Workshops at the Joint Sessions, and Sections at General Conferences.


Following its formation, the Standing Group’s initial activities concentrated on building a network of interested researchers and identifying key research questions. The membership list has grown steadily since then and now stands at over 200 people in Europe and the rest of the world. The Religion and Politics newsletter is published twice a year (May/June and November/December) and is circulated to over 400 subscribers around the world. We are always keen to receive more contributions for the newsletter from members. Please send your contribtions to our newsletter editor, Sultan Tepe, via

In addition, if you have call for papers, call for applications, or other “time-sensitive” issues, get in touch as well and we will forward it to our members between newsletters.

How to join the Standing Group

If you would like to join the Religion and Politics Standing Group, you will need to create a myECPR account at This only takes a few minutes, and you need not be from an ECPR member institution to do so. Then, click on the following link, and select ‘Join Standing Group’.

If you are from an ECPR member institution your membership to the SG is automatic. If you are from a non-member institution we will need to accept your application to join, so your membership status will be ‘pending’ until we accept you.