Historically, religious diverse societies are the common and not the exceptional case. Religious diversity in a nation state context, however, provokes special challenges and thus attracts special attention.
Researchers working within this CERES' focus area address the terms, conditions, and effects of religious diversity both within single religions, the religious field as well as in regard to its regulation by the domains of politics and law.
Since CERES was founded in 2004, the local religious diversity in the Ruhr area and in North Rhine-Westphalia is object of permanent research: The research project Religiöse Vielfalt lokal – regional – global collected empirical data of religious diversity of the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia (approx. 17.8 mill inhabitants) for the first time. Between 2009 and 2014 the young researcher's group Networking Religion took in-depth analyses of religious migrant communities in this region.
In order to extend the research on a global scale, CERES has established the plureligion network with international partners. This network brings together international researchers in this field, which do their research on regional and national specifics of religious diversity.
Since summer 2016, CERES has been hosting the Graduate School Religiöser Pluralität und ihrer Regulierung in der Region (Regulating Religious Plurality in the Region) funded by the Ministery for Innovation, Science and Research of the federal state North Rhine-Westphalia.