Site Features
  • National Profiles: Examine the religious composition, religious freedoms, demographics, constitutional clauses, survey findings and multiple social and political measures for 250 nations.
  • Regional Profiles: Examine the religious composition, religious freedoms, demographics and multiple social and political measures for 22 global regions and the world.
  • Compare Regions: Compare up to eight regions of the world on all measures included in the Regional profiles.
  • Compare Nations: Compare up to eight nations of the world on all measures included in the National profiles.
[Viewing Matches 1-4]  (of 4 total matches in Site Features)
Tutorials
  • Find International Data on Religion: Guide to viewing a country/region religious statistics on religious adherents, religious freedom and tolerance, public opinion towards religion and more.
[Viewing Matches 1-1]  (of 1 total matches in Site Tutorials)
Timeline
  • American Indian Religious Freedom Act : The American Indian Religious Freedom Act, passed in 1978, acknowledged the importance of Native American religious traditions and pledged to protect their rights.
  • Virginia's Religious Disestablishment: In 1786, the Virginia legislature passed a bill by Thomas Jefferson ending the Anglican Church's formal establishment as the state religion.
  • Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993: The Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 allowed the "compelling state interest" test to apply to federal level, not just the state level.
  • Native American Peyote Controversy : Despite passage of the American Indian Religious Freedom Act in 1978, legal judgments continued to challenge the use of peyote in religious services until 1994.
  • Free Methodist Church: Benjamin Titus Roberts and John Wesley Redfield founded the Free Methodist Church in 1860 after failing to reform the Methodist Episcopal Church.
  • Leland, John : John Leland (1754-1841) was a prominent evangelical pastor who defended religious liberty and aided in the ratification of the U.S. Constitution.
  • City of Boerne v. Flores: In this 1997 case, the Supreme Court ruled that Congress had overstepped its constitutional powers in enacting the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993.
  • Peyote Religion and the Native American Church : Use of peyote, a psychedelic source for Native American spirit ceremonies, became widespread in the mid-1880s. In 1906, peyote groups formed the Native American Church.
  • Higgins, George G.: George Higgins (1916-2002) was a Catholic priest and activist during the labor movement. He also helped improve relations between Catholics and Jews.
  • Roger Williams Founds Providence, Rhode Island: In 1636, Roger Williams founded Rhode Island, which became known for its religious tolerance and deregulation of religious behavior.
[Viewing Matches 1-10] > [View Matches 1-14]  (of 14 total matches in Timelines)
Measurements
  • Government Regulation of Religion Index (GRI), 2001: The government regulation index is a comparative measure of the actions of the state that deny religious freedoms including any actions that impinge on the practice, profession, or selection of religion. A higher GRI score indicates greater relgious regulation.
  • Government Regulation of Religion Index (GRI), 2003: The government regulation index is a comparative measure of the actions of the state that deny religious freedoms including any actions that impinge on the practice, profession, or selection of religion. A higher GRI score indicates greater relgious regulation.
  • Government Regulation of Religion Index (GRI), 2005: The government regulation index is a comparative measure of the actions of the state that deny religious freedoms including any actions that impinge on the practice, profession, or selection of religion. A higher GRI score indicates greater relgious regulation.
  • Government Regulation of Religion Index (GRI), 2008: The government regulation index is a comparative measure of the actions of the state that deny religious freedoms including any actions that impinge on the practice, profession, or selection of religion. A higher GRI score indicates greater relgious regulation.
  • Government Regulation of Religion Index (GRI), 2001-2005: The government regulation index is a comparative measure of the actions of the state that deny religious freedoms including any actions that impinge on the practice, profession, or selection of religion. A higher GRI score indicates greater relgious regulation.
  • Government Regulation of Religion Index (GRI), 2003-2008: The government regulation index is a comparative measure of the actions of the state that deny religious freedoms including any actions that impinge on the practice, profession, or selection ofreligion. A higher GRI score indicates greater relgious regulation.
[Viewing Matches 1-6]  (of 6 total matches in Measurement Concepts)
ARDA Dictionary
  • Religious Freedom:The absence of government discrimination, restrictions, regulations and societal pressures on religious individuals or groups. This allows for individuals to change religions, or propagate their message within society with the intent of winning new adherents. Research shows that religious freedoms produce less violent religious persecution, less conflicts, and better overall outcomes for society (Grim and Finke 2011: xiii).
  • Religious Favoritism:Subsidies, privileges, support or favorable sanctions provided by the state to a select religion or a small group of religions. Research shows that religious favoritism can be used to reduce religious freedoms and to control religious groups. Religious favoritism is also associated with higher rates of violent religious persecution (Grim and Finke 2011: 207).
  • Vatican Council II:A church-wide council held for Catholics from 1962-1965 to renew the church and update Catholic teachings, especially involving the liturgy, religious freedom, and ecumenism (Smith and Green 1995: 1114). For more information on Vatican Council II, click here .
  • Government Regulation Index (GRI):This measure assesses the extent to which a government regulates the religious economy present in the country. This index is composed of multiple individual survey items, including government restrictions on public preaching and individual rights to worship. An example of this index is found in the International Religious Freedom Data, Aggregate File (2001-2005) , available in the ARDA’s Data Archive.
  • Blood Transfusions and Jehovah’s Witnesses: It is a common practice for Jehovah’s Witnesses (JW) to refuse blood transfusions, even in life or death situations, on religious grounds. JW believe that one should not sustain one’s life with the blood or another creature, whether through drinking blood or taking someone else’s blood directly into their blood vessels. In this way, JW believe that Jehovah (God) condemns blood transfusions and will condemn those who receive them. Because of this, JW tend to refuse blood transfusions for themselves and their children. Although refusal among adults is accepted as one’s right to personal freedom, the refusal of blood transfusions for JW children is more controversial (Swan 1997). JW have typically lost legal cases involving the health of children (Koenig, King and Carson 2012: 65).
[Viewing Matches 1-5]  (of 5 total matches in the ARDA Dictionary)
Citations
Citations are taken from the Sociology of Religion Searchable Bibliographic Database, created and updated by Anthony J. Blasi (Ph.D. in Sociology, University of Notre Dame; University of Texas at San Antonio). The ARDA is not responsible for content or typographical errors.
  • The judicialization of religious freedom: An institutionalist approach.
    Mayrl, Damon (2018)
    Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 57:3: 514-530.

    Considers an increasing reliance on judicial activity in deciding religious matters & an expanded legal definition of freedom of religion. Considers the institutional context of courts.

    Associated Search Terms: Freedom of religion; Law
  • Human rights and religion: A sociological perspetive.
    Breskaya, Olga, Giuseppe Giordan, and James T. Richardson (2018)
    Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 57:3: 419-431.

    Reviews the development of the sociology of human rights, especially the development of the sociology of religious freedom from the study of minority/majority relations.

    Associated Search Terms: Freedom of religion; Human rights; Sociology of religion
  • Managing religion: Courts as "partners" and "third party partisans" in the social construction of religious freedom.
    Richardson, James T. (2017)
    Religioni e Società 87: 17-23.

    Associated Search Terms: Law; Law; Freedom of religion; Sharia; Islam; Social construction of reality
  • Authoritarian resilience versus everyday resistance: The unexpected strength of religious advocacy in promoting transnational activism in China.
    Wang, Ray (2017)
    Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 56:3: 558-576.

    By building a local network, including government-sponsored social groups, transnational religious activists can pressure an authoritarian regime to incorporate basic freedoms & create space for activism.

    Associated Search Terms: China; Network; Activism; Protest
  • Managing religion and the judicialization of religious freedom.
    Richardson, James T. (2015)
    Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 54:1: 1-19.

    General overview with cases from several nations.

    Associated Search Terms: Freedom of religion; Law; State
  • Directions in religious pluralism in Europe: Mobilizations in the shadow of European Court of Human Rights religious freedom jurisprudence.
    Fokas, Effie (2015)
    Oxford Journal of Law and Religion 4: 54-74.

    Associated Search Terms: Europe; Human rights; Freedom of religion
  • Ensuring liberties: Understanding state restrictions on religious freedoms.
    Finke, Roger, and Robert R. Martin (2014)
    Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 53:4: 687-705.

    Analyzes statistics based on coding U.S. Dept. of State reports on various nations' religious freedom records. Absence of independent judiciaries predicts limitations on religious freedom.

    Associated Search Terms: State; Freedom of religion
  • The societal and legal impact of free exercise guarantees: Findings from quantitative research.
    Martin, Robert R., and Roger Finke (2014)
    In Allen D. Hertzke (ed.) Religious Freedom in America: Constitutional Roots and Contemporary Challenges. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, pp. 91-116.

    Associated Search Terms: Freedom of religion
  • Laws of general application: The retreat from multiculturalism and its implications for religious freedom.
    Beaman, Lori G. (2014)
    In Sonia Sikka and Lori G. Beaman (eds.) Multicultualism and Religious Identity: Canada and India. Montreal: McGill-queens University Press, pp. 236-252.

    Associated Search Terms: Multiculturalism; Freedom of religion; Diversity; Canada; Pluralism
  • The role of the courts in the social construction of religious freedom in Central and Eastern Europe.
    Richardson, James T., and Brian Lee (2014)
    Review of Eastern and Central European Law 39: 291-313.

    Associated Search Terms: Europe; Social construction of reality; Law; Freedom of religion
[Viewing Matches 1-10] > [View Matches 1-36]  (of 36 total matches in Citations)
Data Archive
  • Data from the ARDA National Profiles, 2005 Update: Religion Indexes, Adherents and Other Data:
    This file assembles data from multiple sources, but many of the measures are from the ARDA's coding of the 2003 US State Department's International Religious Freedom Reports. This coding produced data on 195 different countries and territories (see Grim and Finke 2006 for a list of countries coded), but excluded the United States. Additional data on religious regulation and favoritism in the smaller countries not covered by the State Department Reports were provided by researchers at the World Christian Database. In addition, this project assembled (with permission) other cross-national measures of interest to researchers on religion, economics, and politics. They include adherent information from the World Christian Database, scales from Freedom House and the Heritage Foundation, and various socio-economic measures from the United Nations. Measures for religious persecution (AESTIMA) and ethnic identity (DETHNIC) were added to this file in August 2007.

    (Note: This dataset was previously available for download under the title "Cross-National Data: Religion Indexes, Religious Adherents, and Other Data.")
    Funded By: The John Templeton Foundation
    Collected: 2003, Uploaded 8/1/2007
  • International Religious Freedom Data, Aggregate File (2003-2008):
    This file contains aggregate measures from the ARDA's coding of the 2003, 2005, and 2008 U.S. State Department's International Religious Freedom Reports . This coding produced data on 199 countries and territories (see below for list of countries coded), but excluded the United States. It also includes three indexes calculated from these data: the Government Regulation of Religion Index (GRI), the Government Favoritism of Religion Index (GFI), and the Modified Social Regulation of Religion Index (MSRI) [see Grim and Finke (2006) for more information on the GRI and GFI, and see below for more information on the MSRI]. Data in this file represent mean coding responses for three of each variable from all three years of coding unless otherwise noted. Many countries have scores on variables that are expressed as decimals, and which do not correspond with a value label in the variables' descriptions. These decimal values signify that a country's scores on these variables vary over the 2003, 2005 and 2008 Reports.
    Funded By: The John Templeton Foundation
    Collected: 2008, Uploaded 12/14/2012
  • State of the First Amendment Survey, 2000:
    The State of the First Amendment survey, conducted annually (since 1997, except for 1998) for the First Amendment Center by the Center for Survey Research and Analysis at the University of Connecticut, examines public attitudes toward freedom of speech, press, religion and the rights of assembly and petition. Core questions, asked each year, include awareness of First Amendment freedoms, overall assessments of whether there is too much or too little freedom of speech, press, and religion in the U.S., levels of tolerance for various types of public expression (such as flag-burning and singing songs with potentially offensive lyrics), levels of tolerance for various journalistic behaviors, attitudes toward prayer in schools, and level of support for amending the Constitution to prohibit flag-burning or defacement. Additional (non-core) questions asked in the 2000 survey include attitudes toward the role of government in political campaigns, the role of religion and the use of religious materials in classrooms, and attitudes toward government regulation of content on the Internet.
    Funded By: Freedom Forum First Amendment Center American Journalism Review
    Collected: 2000, Uploaded 12/3/2007
  • Cross-National Socio-Economic and Religion Data, 2011:
    This file assembles data from the 2010 United Nations Human Development Report (HDR), the 2011 edition of the Central Intelligence Agency's (CIA) World Factbook and ARDA researchers' coding of the 2008 US Department of State International Religious Freedom (IRF) report. It includes data on economic, social and demographic variables for 252 countries and nations around the world. This is an attempt to draw together numerous variables employed in cross-national research.
    Funded By: Data collection was funded by the John Templeton Foundation .
    Collected: 2011, Uploaded 11/29/2011
  • International Religious Freedom Data, 2008:
    This file contains measures from the ARDA's coding of the 2008 U.S. State Department's International Religious Freedom Reports. This coding produced data on 198 different countries and territories (see below for list of countries coded), but it excluded the United States. It also includes three indexes calculated from these data: Government Regulation of Religion Index (GRI), Modified Social Regulation of Religion Index (MSRI), and Government Favoritism of Religion Index (GFI) (see Grim & Finke, 2006 for information on the GRI and GFI).
    Funded By: The John Templeton Foundation
    Collected: 2008, Uploaded 5/31/2011
  • Data from the ARDA National Profiles, 2011 Update: Religion Indexes, Adherents and Other Data:
    This file assembles data from multiple sources on 250 countries and territories, and also aggregates this data globally and by 22 world regions. The file presents most of the data available on the ARDA National Profiles as of August 2011 in a single downloadable dataset. Many of the measures are from the ARDA's coding of the 2008 US State Department's International Religious Freedom (IRF) Reports. This coding produced data on 198 different countries and territories (see the Summary file for the International Religious Freedom Data, 2008 for a list of countries coded, available for download from the ARDA), but excluded the United States. In addition, this project assembled (with permission) other cross-national measures of interest to researchers on religion, economics, and politics. They include adherent information from the World Christian Database, scales from Freedom House, the Religion and State Project, the Polity IV Project, the Heritage Foundation, the Correlates of War Project, and the CIRI Human Rights Data Project, and various socio-economic measures from the United Nations and the CIA's World Factbook. The source of each variable in this dataset is acknowledged in the variable's description, except in the case of those variables generated by ARDA researchers' coding of the Department of State's IRF Reports.
    Funded By: Data collection was funded by the John Templeton Foundation .
    Collected: 2010, Uploaded 12/16/2011
  • International Religious Freedom Data, Aggregate File (2001-2005):
    This file contains aggregate measures from the ARDA's coding of the 2001, 2003, and 2005 U.S. State Department's International Religious Freedom Reports. This coding produced data on 196 different countries and territories (see below for list of countries coded), but excluded the United States. It also includes three indexes calculated from these data: Government Regulation of Religion index (GRI), Social Regulation of Religion index (SRI), Government Favoritism of Religion index (GFI) (see Grim and Finke, 2006). Data in this file represent mean coding responses for each variable from all three years of coding.
    Funded By: The John Templeton Foundation
    Collected: 2006, Uploaded 8/1/2007
  • Detroit Area Study, 1997: Social Change in Religion and Child Rearing:
    Respondents from three counties in the Detroit area were queried about their work, health, marriage and family, finances, political views, religion and child rearing. With respect to finances, respondent views were asked about credit card purchases, recording expenditures and investments. Regarding political views, respondents were questioned about political preferences, presidential values, freedom of speech, nuclear war and the interest of public officials. Questions also addressed religious beliefs and experiences, including the religiosity of respondents' parents, belief in and relationship with God, the relationship between science and religion, school prayer, divorce, homosexuality, interfaith marriages, religion of friends and observance of religious holy days. Questions were asked about the views of respondents' religious leaders on issues including drinking, abortion, and test-tube fertilization. Regarding child rearing, questions were asked pertaining to religious training given to child(ren) and frequency of prayer before meals. Background information includes marital status, employment, political orientation and income.
    Funded By: University of Michigan
    Collected: 1997, Uploaded 10/16/2013
  • State of the First Amendment Survey, 2005:
    The State of the First Amendment survey, conducted annually (since 1997, except for 1998) for the First Amendment Center, examines public attitudes toward the freedoms of speech, press, and religion and the rights of assembly and petition. Core questions, asked each year, include awareness of First Amendment freedoms, overall assessments of whether there is too much or too little freedom of speech, press, and religion in the United States, levels of tolerance for various types of public expression (such as flag-burning and singing songs with potentially offensive lyrics), levels of tolerance for various journalistic behaviors, attitudes toward prayer in schools, and level of support for amending the Constitution to prohibit flag-burning or defacement. Additional (non-core) questions asked in the 2005 survey include attitudes toward religious freedom in the workplace, freedom of expression in the public schools, the display of the Ten Commandments in public buildings, the confidentiality of library records, and government's ability to restrict various types of content in public broadcasts.
    Funded By: The First Amendment Center American Journalism Review
    Collected: 2005, Uploaded 10/3/2007
  • International Religious Freedom Data, 2005:
    This file contains measures from the ARDA's coding of the 2005 U.S. State Department's International Religious Freedom Reports. This coding produced data on 196 different countries and territories (see below for list of countries coded), but excluded the United States. It also includes three indexes calculated from these data: Government Regulation of Religion index (GRI), Social Regulation of Religion index (SRI), Government Favoritism of Religion index (GFI) (see Grim and Finke, 2006). The ARDA also coded International Religious Freedom Reports for the years 2001 and 2003. All three years of data (2001, 2003, and 2005) are aggregated into a single dataset, International Religious Freedom Data, Aggregate File, which we recommend as the best data to use for most statistical models.
    Funded By: The John Templeton Foundation
    Collected: 2004, Uploaded 8/31/2007
[Viewing Matches 1-10] > [View Matches 1-22]  (of 22 total matches in the Data Archive Files)
Investigators/Researchers
[Viewing Matches 1-7]  (of 7 total matches in Investigators)
Questions/Variables on Surveys
[Viewing Matches 1-10] > [View Matches 1-150]  (of 1092 total matches in Data Archive Questions/Variables)
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