Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Successful Centre of Excellence bid

Dr. Timothy Stanton is part of a successful Centre of Excellence in Research bid to the Academy of Finland, on the theme of ‘Reason and Religious Recognition’, to run from 2014-19.

The Board of the Academy of Finland has selected 14 Centres of Excellence in Research (CoE), involving research teams from twelve universities or research institutes. The Academy has reserved a total of EUR 45 million for the first three years of the six-year programme term.

“The units selected to the new CoE programme represent the international cutting edge of research in their respective fields. The Academy believes that the new CoEs have great potential to achieve significant breakthroughs in their research and be successful in the competition for EU funding and international researchers, for instance,” said Marja Makarow, Vice President for Research at the Academy of Finland.

The Academy’s CoE call attracted a total of 128 letters of intent, of which the Academy’s Board selected 34 to submit full applications. These applications were reviewed by international expert panels. Unit representatives were also interviewed at the Academy.

CoEs are the flagships of Finnish research. They are at the very cutting edge of science in their fields, carving out new avenues for research, developing creative research environments and training new talented researchers for Finnish society and business and industry.

The ‘Reason and Religious Recognition’ CoE is directed by Professor Risto Saarinen, a theologian based at the University of Helsinki. It aims

(i) to analyze historically the encounters and forms of recognition in and between Judaism, Christianity and Islam, paying special attention to the rational construction of theological systems in these traditions and 

(ii) to use contemporary philosophy of religion and the cognitive science of religion to understand co-operative religious reasoning, leading to the elaboration of systematic models of rational recognition and multicultural tolerance in the field of religion.

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