Lehrstuhl für Religionspädagogik



How can we create a culture of “living together in the world” which guarantees peace, freedom and justice for everyone? How can we make sure that the very basic value of human dignity is respected by states, institutions and people? It is obvious that in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnical and multi-religious world such a culture cannot be guaranteed by a specific world view or a particular ideology. Therefore most of the countries in the world agreed to understand human rights as an expression and elaboration of the very basic value of human dignity. Human rights shall function as a general agreement ensuring a save world and offering the foundation of a civilization of peace, freedom and justice.

Currently there are many tensions between particular world views, religions and human rights. Representatives of particular ideologies oppose any understanding of human rights as a substitute of their convictions. The challenge is now to elaborate ideas how religions, world views and the concept of human rights can be valued as compatibles instead of irreconcilable opposites. It is therefore necessary to elaborate reasons and possibilities how values of religions, world views and human rights can be combined.

In the program Religion and Human Rights scholars of about 25 countries in Europe and other parts of the world agreed to research the attitudes of young people on human rights. The empirical study includes altogether about 25 000 students in the participating countries. This research will also clarify whether religion has any impact on human rights attitudes, if the students’ political opinions on state and democracy matter and if so how their concepts of values are taken into account.

Conference December 2017

5th Conference Religion and Human Rights

6-9 December 2017 in UPPSALA - Sweden

Conference December 2016

4th Conference Religion and Human Rights

11 – 14 December 2016 in WÜRZBURG – Germany

Conference December 2015

3rd Conference Religion and Human Rights

9 – 12 December 2015 in ZAGREB – Croatia


Religion and political human rights in empirical perspective 

In our contemporary world, many human rights are under pressure. Media reports of restrictions on the right to protest, the active and passive right to vote, the right to associate, the right to assemble and the right of self-defense. Torture takes place, refugees fear for their lives and asylum seekers are confronted with resistance and rejection. Populist groups seem to be successful in mobilizing many people against anything foreign and unknown. All people should be equal before the law and should be given a fair trial, regardless of their offence, but political practice is often different. Human rights are disrespected in many countries around the world. This is a clear challenge for the promotion of human rights. The perception of many people is that ideological interests effectively subordinate human rights. What role does religion play in this context? Supports religion the defense of human rights, or submits to ideological interests? The focus of the 2015-conference is on political and judicial rights. The general question is: What religious attitudes can be found among religious and non-religious citizens with regard to political and judicial rights? Can religion be identified as a force supporting the human rights regime? 

Conference December 2014

36 Wissenschaftlerinnen und Wissenschaftler mehr als 20 Ländern trafen sich vom 10. bis zum 13. Dezember an der Universität Würzburg, um Ergebnisse der internationalen empirischen Studie „Religion and Human Rights“ zu diskutieren. Die internationale Tagung beschäftigte sich mit einem hochaktuellen und brisanten Thema: dem Verhältnis von Religion, Bürgerrechten und Demokratie weltweit. Gastgeber der von der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) finanzierten Tagung war Professor Hans-Georg Ziebertz, Inhaber des Lehrstuhls für Religionspädagogik, der seit 2010 das internationale Projekt als Koordinator leitet, dessen Projektpartner aus rund 25 Ländern in Europa, Afrika, Asien und Südamerika stammen.

36 scientists from over 20 different nations met for 3 days in Würzburg in early December to discuss the results of the international empirical study “Religion and Human Rights”. The international conference dealt with a highly topical and controversial issue: the global relationship between religion, citizens’ rights and democracy. The conference has been financed by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and was hosted by Hans-Georg Ziebertz, professor for religious education at the Institute of Practical Theology. Prof. Ziebertz heads the international project since 2010. The number of partners involved has increased steadily over the years and now it includes more than 25 countries.

 Here you can find the Programm of the Conference and the abstracts of the presented papers.

Conference December 2012

Vom 9.-12. Dezember 2012 trafen sich auf Einladung von Professor Hans-Georg Ziebertz Wissenschaftler aus 20 europäischen Ländern in Würzburg zu einer „kick-off“ Veranstaltung für ein internationales, interdisziplinär ausgerichtetes empirisches Forschungsprojekt „Religion and Human Rights“. Die Forscherinnen und Forscher wollen in den kommenden 4 Jahren zusammenarbeiten und gemeinsam der Frage nachgehen, welche Bedeutung religiöse Einstellungen und Motive für junge Menschen in Europa hinsichtlich der Akzeptanz der Menschenrechte haben. Die Tagung wurde von der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) unterstützt.

Following Professor Hans-Georg Ziebertz's invitation scientists from 20 European countries will met in Würzburg from Dec. 9th to Dec. 12. 2012 to "kick off" an international, interdisciplinary empirical research project about "Religion and Human Rights". In the next four years the researchers want to cooperate in finding out what relevance religious attitudes and motives have for young Europeans concerning their acceptance of Human Rights.

The conference was financially supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG; German Research Federation).

Symposium and Conference May 2012

Am Dienstag, den 16.05.2012, fand vormittags am Paradeplatz ein öffentliches Symposium zum Thema „Religion and Human Rights in Eastern European Countries“ statt. 

Zum Verhältnis von Religion und Menschenrechten in ihrem jeweiligen
Heimatland referierten:

Dr. Olga Breskaya (Belarus, Litauen)

Prof. Andrej Baumeister (Ukraine)

Prof. Ivan Zabaev (Russische Föderation)

Prof. Milan Podunavac (Serbien)

Dr. Uzeyir Ok (Türkei)

Prof. Hans van der Ven (Niederlande) 

Die Veranstaltung fand unter der Leitung von Prof. Dr. Dr. Hans-Georg Ziebertz, Professor für Religionspädagogik, und in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Kompetenzzentrum GSiK der Universität Würzburg statt.