Religion, Culture and Society (RCS) research

Institute of Creativity, Communities and Culture (ICCC)

The Religion, Culture and Society (RCS) research group is committed to furthering our understanding of the cultural and social impact of religion and belief structures from the global to the local scale.

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Buddhist Monk
Buddhist Monk

RCS Researchers are a diverse community of postgraduate students working towards our Masters by Research, MPhils and PhDs. We are committed to real-life research connected to fields of study within Religion, Culture and Society.

We are rooted in classical and contemporary theology, religious studies, interfaith dialogue and intercultural relationship. We support global dialogue, pluralism, multiculturalism, human rights, social and global justice. We aim to generate evidence that challenges prejudices that can translate into changes in practice and shape policy.

We hold regular seminar workshops featuring guest speakers throughout the year. We also host regular public lectures and conferences that unite local and national communities interested in the field of religion, culture and society. The RCS research community contributes to many local projects and outreach programmes, particularly supporting interfaith dialogue and cultural awareness.

To find out more about research in RCS, contact Dr Carolyn King.

RCS Greek-Christianity-girl-lighting-candle


We make a major contribution to the promotion and development of innovative practice, both within the University and externally. The impact and influence religion and belief have on social structures, community, politics and policy, economics and education, culture and identity, sexuality and spirituality, national and international relationships etc. cannot be overstated.

We also work in partnership with Lancashire Hate Crime Unit raising awareness of hate crime in the North West. We promote the value of difference and generate genuine understanding of Other. RCS informs past, present and future understandings and developments globally and gives us an understanding of current events that affect the global community.


We are united by a commitment to the practice and understanding of historical and contemporary effects of religion, culture and society; particularly to the community and region to which we belong, but also national and international concerns.

We are recognised nationally and internationally for excellence, innovation and research-led teaching, are acknowledged experts in our fields, and all hold Teaching Fellowship status with the Higher Education Academy.


Research culture

This group has a growing research culture where our students are engaging in both conceptual based and empirical research. Their involvement from MA, MPhil to PhD study explores wide and varied research themes that range from New Religious Movements to Feminist Theology.

A small example of current student engagement includes exciting and innovative discoveries from:

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My academic endeavours and continued passion for the field have been consistently celebrated within the department; providing the confidence necessary to make it to the end of the PhD journey.
Edward Graham-Hyde
PhD via MPhil Religion, Culture and Society

Research groups and consultancy

The RCS Team are members on several high profile national and international research groups. Most of these networks and partnerships support Humanitarian or Social Justice concerns. Here are a few examples:

  • United Nations Development Projects in collaboration with Faith Associates, UK
  • Criminal Justice Partnership, the University of Central Lancashire and partners
  • Lancashire BAME Network; Religion and Race, the University of Central Lancashire and partners
  • Peace and Justice Studies Network, the University of Central Lancashire and partners
  • Hate Crime Awareness, North West and partners
  • UCLan Music Research Network
  • BSA Sociology of Religion Study Group
  • Muslims in Britain Research Network
  • Heavenly Acts Research Network
  • UCLan Social Sciences Research Group
  • UCLan Criminology Research Unit
  • Consultee: National Burial Council and National Organ Donation Campaign
  • Music Research Group / MIDEX
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RCS research projects

The RCS Team work collegially with influential and high-profile working groups and partners supporting local and international projects. We are also involved in fund raising and charity work together with organising and supporting interfaith and intercultural research projects.

The RCS Research Team are acknowledged experts in their fields. We have a wide variety of links with local, national and international faith and intercultural forums, faith schools and academic institutions. We also work with charity organisations and global outreach programmes based in the UK and overseas.

Our unique specialisms include; morality and ethics, systems of belief and cultural relationships, faith and belief, sacredness and spirituality, technology and globalisation – to name a few.

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Academic expertise

Dr Carolyn King
Programme Leader; Religion, Culture & Society (BA & MA Courses)
School of Psychology and Humanities

Carolyn joined UCLan and the Combined Honours Team in 2003 as the Senior Lecturer responsible for the 1st year cohort. In August 2006, she became the Programme Leader for “Religion, Culture & Society” (RCS). Carolyn developed RCS, both undergraduate and postgraduate courses, and…

Dr Carl Morris
Lecturer in Religion, Culture and Society
School of Psychology and Humanities

Carl Morris is a lecturer and researcher working across various sociological disciplines, including popular culture, media, religion, and lifestyle/leisure. He teaches a wide range of areas relating to sociology, media, culture and religion. His latest research project, running b…