Values on the move: transnational perspectives on religion, politics and aid

Please note: This page refers to a course that has already taken place.

11 - 13 May 2022


Jørgen Jensehaugen:


Invited international keynote speakers:

Professor Peggy Levitt

Levitt is Luella LaMer Slaner Professor in Latin American Studies; Professor of Sociology at Wellesley College. Her interests include global arts and culture, museums, international migration, transnational relations and processes, development, and religion. In addition to teaching at Wellesley, Peggy is an Associate at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University where she co-directs The Politics and Social Change Workshop.


Associate Professor Mayke Kaag

Kaag is Associate Professor Political Anthropology of Africa's Global Connections. She is a social and political anthropologist interested in processes of change and continuity in West and West-Central Africa. Her current research focuses primarily on African transnational relations, including land issues, transnational Islamic charities and engagements with the diaspora. She is the convenor of the collaborative research group


Other lecturers include:

Bosnian researchers (TBC)

Nancy Ammerman, Professor, Boston University. 

Tomas Sundnes Drønen, Professor, VID Specialized University. 

Gina Lende, Associate Professor, MF-Norwegian School of Theology, Religion and Society. 

Kaja Borchgrevink, Senior Researcher, Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO).

This PhD-seminar will explore the relationships between religion, values and politics by focusing on the various ways in which religious actors, networks and institutions carry and transmit ideas, norms, and values that influence public debates, policy and practice across transnational social fields. Religious actors and institutions have received considerable academic interest in the last decades, often perceived to be key political actors due to their ability to draw on transnational identities, network and resources. In this seminar we apply a broad definition of politics, including collective decision making and debates on resource allocations and normative standards outside of national governments. How transnational religious actors -through the provision of welfare services, charity, or aid - carry and transmit norms and values, will be a focus through the seminar.

Course Description:

Some of the question we seek to shed light on in this seminar are: How do ideas, norms, and values travel? How can a transnational lens help us understand cultural change?  What happens in the interface of different normative traditions and how are 'global' values made sense of in 'local' contexts? What can a focus on transnational flows and connections reveal about the relationship between religion and politics, and how can we study transnational flows of ideas, norms, and values?

The course will combine lectures, group and plenary discussions, and presentations of students' papers. 

The course is a collaboration between the two research schools at MF - Norwegian school of Theology, Religion and Society and  the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO), on religion, values and society (RVS) and Peace and Conflict.

The course will take place in Sarajevo. Participation is free of charge, but students will have to cover their own travel and accommodation costs. 


Application deadline: 15 February 2022
Successful applicants will be notified by end of February 2022



1) Active participation in class discussions: The course will be run as a seminar, where debate and discussion are the norm. For this format to be successful, students need to read the seminar readings prior to the course. 

2) Preparation of a short paper (max 3 pages) for the group discussion:  The paper may discuss how (i) how politics and/or policy impact on your PhD research project, (ii) how adopting a transnational perspective in the study of values, religion and/or politics would impact your PhD research project, or (iii) how other theoretical and/or methodological perspectives from the course literature impact on your PhD research work. The paper should be submitted before 1 April 2022.


If students wish to receive 3 ECTS credit for the course, they must submit a full paper (up to 3000 words) that is marked as "pass".