An interdisciplinary research institution with a resident program in Princeton, NJ

Call for Applications, 2017–18 Academic Year

Inquiry on Religion & Migration

During the academic year 2017/18, the Center will hold an “Inquiry on Religion & Migration.” The human species has been a migrant one since its evolution out of Africa. In an era of forced migration, this phenomenon is now of global concern. Religion is a key factor in the movement of peoples and the study of migration. What do religious traditions look like when seen through the lens of migration? In what ways do religious communities influence the immigrant experience? How should religious actors respond to what Saskia Sassen has called emergent migrant flows, including unaccompanied minors, religious minorities, and those fleeing war zones and despoiled habitats? To what extent can religions make a normative contribution to public debates on migrants and refugees? How can ecumenical, comparative, and interreligious theologies take migration into account? The Center invites applications from scholars in theology, religious studies, migration studies, the humanities, and social sciences, with projects that will inform the wider inquiry.

About the Center 

The Center of Theological Inquiry (CTI) convenes leading thinkers in an interdisciplinary research environment where theology makes an impact on global concerns. The Center offers its resident community of scholars optimal conditions for research, including spacious studies, furnished housing, and access to world class libraries. Scholars in CTI’s program welcome its terms of membership: working daily at the Center alongside fellow members; meeting weekly in a Colloquium to discuss work in progress and emerging questions; and participating in a Symposium series on migration with visiting scholars.

Fall Semester Symposia

 Saskia Sassen, Columbia University, on migration and globalization
 David Hollenbach, Georgetown University, on refugees and human rights
 Anver Emon, University of Toronto, on borders, boundaries and strangers in Islamic law
 John Ahn, Howard University, on exile and forced migration in biblical texts

Spring Semester Symposia

Peter Phan, Georgetown University, will lead a symposium series on the impact of migration on the understanding and practice of religion, especially Christianity in the United States. It will have four foci:

(1) Migration and the social sciences, especially anthropology, sociology, politics, economics, and law; 
(2) Migration and religious traditions, especially Judaism, Christianity, and Islam;
(3) Migration and Christian theology in World Christianity;
(4) Migration, ethics and pastoral practice.

How to Apply 

Applications should be made for one or both semesters: Fall Semester, mid-August to mid-December, 2017; Spring Semester, mid-January to mid-May, 2018. CTI members are required to live in the Center’s housing in Princeton in order to take an active part in the interdisciplinary exchange with fellow members in the Inquiry. The Center will offer a limited number of stipends for one semester to offset additional living costs (including a monthly housing fee of $1,000 plus utilities), but scholars must secure funding from their home institution or external sources.

To begin the application process, click on ‘Application Form’ on the upper right corner of this page. The deadline for applications is January 16, 2017 at 11:59 pm EST. All queries about the Inquiry or application process should be addressed to the Application Manager at

Selection Process 

A selection committee of CTI’s Academic Advisory Panel will review applications for final interview. Highly qualified applicants will then be contacted for a personal interview with the Center’s Director. Applicants selected for interview may also be asked to provide additional information during the selection process. Selection for an interview is based on the applicant’s research project proposal, record of scholarly achievement, and recommendations. Final selections also consider experience and aptitude in interdisciplinary research, fit between the applicant’s research project and other proposals, and ability and willingness to meet the program’s requirements for participation and residence.

The Center’s Director makes the final offer of appointment. CTI will inform all applicants of the decision on their application by March 1, 2017. Successful applicants must accept the Director’s offer of a Resident Membership by March 15, 2017. 


Future Inquiries 

In the Spring of 2017 the CTI website will announce the timing of three further Inquiries on Global Concerns, 2018-21:

Inquiry on Religion & Inequality

Inquiry on Religion & Violence

Inquiry on Religion & Environment

Scholars will be able to apply for the Fall and/or Spring Semesters in each of these yearlong Inquiries. Applicants should be self-funding but CTI will offer stipends for one semester to offset additional living costs in Princeton.