Introducing the Network… Chris Baker

3 04 2013



I am the Co-Investigator on this project and I work for two centres: One is as Director of Research for the William Temple Foundation ( and the other is as Senior Lecturer in Public and Urban Theology in the Dept of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Chester. I am also Director of the Centre for Faiths and Public Policy which is run out of that Dept: (

My role in the team is to anchor some of the perspectives of practical and public theology within the network, since it is these branches of theology that are perhaps most committed to making sense of how religion is actually performed with in the public space of a diverse and pluralised society like the UK. This often involves empirical research not only into the practices of religious communities but also their impact on wider society. To that end I have been involved for many years in the empirical study of religion and its relationship to public life, including projects for the Church Urban Fund, AHRC, ESRC and Leverhulme Trust. The main areas of my work have been engaged with ideas of religious and spiritual capital, faith groups and moral freighting (i.e. how faith groups freight or carry out their morals into public life,) and the post-secular city. So as you can see I am bit of a Jack of all trades (I refrain from completing this well-known maxim!), engaging at the boundaries of research  between theology, human geography and sociology of religion. I feel practical theology will benefit a huge deal from engaging more specifically with philosophical ideas concerning the nature of reality, virtue and ethics and I am learning so much from Dan and Katharine – it’s a real joy to be part of a dynamic and inter-disciplinary team. One thing that seems to be shaping all our work is the idea that the potential impact of philosophy and religion on public life has never been more timely as we look for signs of substance, hope and cohesion upon which to build a more just and sustainable social order in the current politics of austerity and despair. For full details of what I currently do please visit my webpage : of Chester. I am also Director of the Centre for Faiths and Public Policy which is run out of that Dept: (



One response

12 04 2013
Introducing the Network… Katharine Sarah Moody | Philosophy and Religious Practices

[…] with Dan and Chris as a Research Associate for the Philosophy and Religious Practices (PRP) network, I’ve been […]

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