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Von Hügel Institute

for Critical Catholic Inquiry

A workshop on 'Faith Governance and Public Policy' jointly organised by the Von Hügel Institute and the BISA working group on Religion Security and IR

On Wednesday 2 July - Venue: Alison Richards Building Room S2, 7 West Road, Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS), Cambridge, CB3 9DT


10:45 - Arrival & registration

11:00 - Prof. John Loughlin (VHI, Cambridge), Welcome

PANEL 1: Policy Challenges

11:05 - Dr Sara Silvestri (City Univ. London and Cambridge) "Convergences and divergences in attitudes to religious and cultural diversity in the Euro-Mediterranean region"

11:20 - Mr Warwick Hawkins (Department for Culture, formerly at DCLG) "British government policies of engagement with faith-based actors"

11:35 - Prof.Maleiha Malik (King's College London) "Regulating Religious Diversity in Liberal Societies"

11:50 - brief Q&A

PANEL 2 - Legal perspectives addressing policy challenges

12:00 - Dr Shaun Larcom (SOAS & Cambridge University), "Legal Pluralism”

12:15 - Mr Greg Walsh (University of Notre Dame Australia) "The Regulation of the Employment Decisions of Religious Schools under Anti-Discrimination Legislation"

12:30 - Prof. Roberto Scarciglia (University of Trieste) "Methodological Pluralism and Legal Comparison"

12:45 - Q&A followed by general discussion

13:15 - Conclusions and light buffet lunch

14:15 - Departure


Prof. John Loughlin is the Director of the Von Hügel Institute, a fellow of St Edmund’s College and a member of the POLIS department at the University of Cambridge. He has carried out extensive research on territorial politics in Europe and on the relationship between religion and politics. Trained at the EUI in Florence, he has held academic positions in Cardiff, Belfast, France, Sweden, Belgium and the Netherlands and is the recipient of numerous recognitions and awards for his career.

Warwick Hawkins is a career civil servant and is currently part of the team at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport responsible for the centenary commemorations of the First World War, where he is leading on ensuring that faith communities have opportunities to participate in the commemorations. For 17 years and in various Government roles he has been involved in promoting effective engagement between Government policy makers and Churches and other faith groups in England. He has also led on promoting inter faith dialogue and social action, for which he was awarded the MBE in the 2014 New Year's Honours list.

Prof. Maleiha Malik, Professor in Law, King's College London. She studied at the Universities of London and Oxford. She is a barrister and a member of the Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn. Maleiha Malik’s research focuses on the theory and practice of discrimination law. She has written extensively on discrimination law, minority protection and feminist theory. She is the co-author of a leading text titled Discrimination Law: Theory and Practice which was published in 2008. She is, along with Dr Jon Wilson from the Department of History at KCL, the co-ordinator of the AHRC project on ‘Traditions in the Present’ which explores the relevance of 'tradition' in contemporary societies. Her current research focuses on the intersection between sexual and cultural equality, and it explores the adjustments that may need to be made to feminist theory to accommodate increasing cultural pluralism. She teaches courses in Jurisprudence and Legal Theory, Discrimination Law and European Law to undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Dr Sara Silvestri is Senior Lecturer in Religion and International Politics at City University London and is an affiliated lecturer in Cambridge’s POLIS department. She also leads the Ethics and Public Policy research cluster at the Von Huegel Institute. She was educated in Italy, Belgium and France and the UK. Her research and publications focus on Muslim political mobilisation, the nexus migration-multiculturalism, and the role of faith-based actors in the Euro-Mediterranean region; she is the recipient of numerous research grants and has served as an advisor in her areas of specialism to various governments and international organisations.

Dr Shaun Larcom is Lecturer in Environmental Economics and Development at the Centre for Development, Environment and Policy at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.  He is also a Departmental Fellow at the Department of Land Economy and has an association with St Edmund's College, University of Cambridge. His research is focused on how informal and formal institutions interact with one another and the consequences of such interactions, especially on the environment and development.

Mr Greg Walsh is a lecturer in the School of Law at the Sydney Campus of The University of Notre Dame Australia. He is currently on sabbatical leave to complete his doctorate on the impact of anti-discrimination legislation on religious schools. His research interests include law and religion, human rights and medical law.

Prof. Roberto Scarciglia is Professor of Comparative Law at University of Trieste, and he serves as Director of the Department of Political and Social Sciences. His work focuses on the methodology for comparative law, globalization, multiculturalism and administrative law. His most recent book, in Spanish language, Introducción al Derecho Constitucional Comparado (Dykinson, Madrid 2011), is based on ten years of fieldwork among new perspectives in comparative law.  He also writes about administrative law in the Balkans, multiculturalism and comparative methodology.




Participation is open and free but REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED (please write to Lidia Ripamonti at ). A small amount of travel grants are available for doctoral students, especially if BISA members. We are also looking for a new team of convenors of the BISA working group. Contact Dr Silvestri to express your interest (


The workshop will take place in the POLIS department, NOT at the Von Huegel Institute itself: directions and map



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