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Dr. Amrei Sander

Associate Member

Areas of Interest

  • Sociology of religion(s)
  • Sociology and theology of German free churches
  • Gender and religion
  • Feminism and gender equality
  • Science and religion
  • Islamic reformism, specially literal sense-orientated movements and feminist theology

Science and Religion: Exploring the Spectrum of Global Perspectives (SRES2)

This international and multidisciplinary research projects seeks to analyse how scientists and members of the public conceptualise the relationship between biological evolution and religion, and by extension the relationship between science, rationality and religion. It aims to build a better understanding of how members of the public view that relationship across different cultural and social contexts and differing religious, spiritual and non-religious groups. It thus tries to provide a global evidence base for non-reductionist models of effectively engaging diverse publics and faith groups with evolutionary science.

SRES2 employs four intersecting research strands: qualitative social science field research; global history, historical and media discourse analysis; social psychology experimental research; and large-scale quantitative surveys of public perceptions, attitudes and identity formation. The qualitative social science strand will involve focus groups and semi-structured interviews in Spain, Germany, Argentina, Australia and Sri Lanka, carried out with religious and non-religious members of the public and scientists working in the life, biological and medical sciences. I will conduct the qualitative research in Germany.

The research questions for the qualitative strand are:

  • How do interview and focus group participants perceive the relationship between science and religion in general?
  • Do participants perceive a necessary clash between science and belief in their own worldview, and/or in that of others? If so, what is the nature of this clash? If not, why not?
  • How do participants perceive religious evolutionary scientists? What preconceptions/prejudices do participants hold about scientists with religious beliefs?
  • Do research participants have any experience of misconceptions or prejudices relating to the beliefs they hold about evolutionary science?
  • What is the level of cognitive dissonance and/or social projection in relation to evolution and personal belief within each research group? Do levels vary within or between groups?
  • Who do research participants see as an authority on matters of science? Does it matter if these questions are raised in a “religious” or a “secular” space?
  • Do publics’ perceptions of science in relation to their own beliefs inhibit or encourage their levels of engagement with or trust in different aspects of evolutionary science research on a day-to-day level?

SRES2, like its predecessor SRES1 – which focused the UK and Canada – is funded by the Templeton Religious Trust. It is hosted by the University of Birmingham.


2019 - present

Research Associate, “Science and Religion 2”, University of Birmingham and HCAS “Multiple Secularities – Beyond the West, Beyond Modernities”, Leipzig University (Germany)


Project coordinator, “I_Pro Mitte”, intersectional support programme for female* PhD students and PostDocs at Humboldt University, Berlin (Germany)


PhD (Dr. phil.), Faculty of Theology, Humboldt University, Berlin


Lecturer, Faculty of Theology, Humboldt University, Berlin


PhD-scholarship Elsa-Neumann-Stiftung


Lecturer, Faculty of Theology, Humboldt University, Berlin


Deputy gender equality officer for the Humboldt University, Berlin


Scholarship Caroline-von-Humboldt programme (Scholarship for female students)


Master of Arts, Religion and Culture, Humboldt University, Berlin

Relevant Publications

  • Sander, Amrei. “Salafismus / Salafiyya Als Historische Reformbewegung Und Ihr Einfluss Auf Islamische Strömungen Der Gegenwart.” Evangelische Theologie 79, no. 3 (2019): 193–209. doi:10.14315/evth-2019-790306.
  • Sander, Amrei. “Für Ein Respektvolles Miteinander in Der Lehre.” Humboldt Chancengleich 9, no. 12 (2017): 60.
  • Sander, Amrei. „Berührungspunkte feministischer islamischer und christlicher Theologie.“ George-Anawati-Stiftung (published online in 2016,
  • Sander, Amrei. “Kein Ausschluss Durch Sprache.” Humboldt Chancengleich 7, no. 11 (2015): 38.