The number and quality of papers on religion and international relations at ISA annual conventions is on the rise. In recent years, some 3-5% of papers delivered at ISA annual conventions have been on religion, indicating a widespread interest. The advantages of having these papers sponsored by an organized section are considerable. Scholars interested in religion have a hard time locating like-minded colleagues or panels at ISA conventions, developing common projects or furthering their interests as a sub-group. The American Political Science Association has had a religion and politics section since September 1987. It boasts close to 600 members, making it the 13th largest of the forty APSA sections. Setting up a section on religion and IR at ISA will allow participants to sponsor their own panels and expand the number of papers presented at ISA at an even faster pace. It will also afford ISA members who are interested in religion the opportunity to network at an annual reception, recognize outstanding papers and books with section awards and initiate round tables and discussion forums.
The purposes of the REL are:
- To promote the exchange of ideas among REL-interested scholars across both disciplinary and international boundaries;
- To support a scholarly community and promote REL-related studies;
- To facilitate networking and cooperation among scholars and students working on religion and International Relations.
- To strengthen research and teaching in the field and attract talented new scholars to it.