State of the Art Reports

State of the Art Report: Funding religious heritage

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Author(s): 
Anne Fornerod
Publication: 
RELIGARE State of the Art Report
Abstract: 

Places of worship and the ‘movable goods’ within them are a familiar and important part of the cultural heritage of Europe. With some exceptions, one can observe many common points in the way European countries manage and preserve these goods, particularly from a financial point of view. As a result, in many countries, the heritage dimension of places of worship makes them eligible for additional funding.
Moreover, dealing with this issue means meeting two major challenges: the religious/cultural divide and the recurrent and widespread lack of funds.
A question remains open that paves the way for further investigation: does the shared concern for preserving religious heritage lead to a common pattern of funding in Europe? Or do the domestic specificities of church-state relations prevail?

State of the Art Report: The Public Space. The Formal and Substantive Neutrality of the Public Sphere

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Author(s): 
Silvio Ferrari and Sabrina Pastorelli
Publication: 
RELIGARE State of the Art Report
Abstract: 

The public space issue cannot be appropriately addressed without keeping into account these three different perspectives. This is why WP5 has chosen, as case-studies, the dress codes (that are relevant both to the spatial and to the personal approach) and the religiously oriented private schools (that are relevant to the functional approach). But why to include a third case-study, the places of worship? Places of worship are the most visible manifestation of religion in the public space (in the sense of streets and squares). In theory, building a place of worship should be a no-problem issue: as this type of public space is accessible to all, all religious communities should be entitled to have their own places of worship, provided they respect some general rules concerning safety, health, etc. In practice, it is not so: almost everywhere in Europe building a Muslim mosque or a Jehovah Witnesses’ temple is much more difficult than building a Catholic (or Orthodox or Protestant) church and some countries (Switzerland, the Carinthian region of Austria ) have recently limited the right to build a place of worship according to the architectural canons that are traditional in some religions. The place of worship issue is a privileged observatory to study how much the accessibility of the public space –even in its part that should be open to all without limitations- is questioned in a society that is not accustomed to religious plurality.

State of the Art Report: The Family

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Author(s): 
Thalia Kruger
Publication: 
RELIGARE State of the Art Report
Abstract: 

Private international law is mainly concerned with linking private law relations to a national legal system. Its rules are usually only used when the relations at stake have cross-border elements. This legal discipline uses a tight methodology: classifying the legal problem and employing connecting factors to refer to a particular legal system. This paper considers the various elements of private international law that are indicative of the positivistic nature ascribed to it. In doing so, it demonstrates that private international law is not neutral, but often concerned with the outcome.
As private international law is a formal legal discipline, it can be used to keep legal pluralism out. For instance, by the use of connecting factors on the one hand and exceptions (such as public policy) on the other, private international law can prevent the application of certain legal norms. Alternatively, private international law can show itself to be tolerant and allow the application of different norms. The paper concludes with suggestions for further research.

State of the Art Report: Religion and the Workplace

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Author(s): 
Katayoun Alidadi
Publication: 
RELIGARE State of the Art Report
Abstract: 

A Christian tram conductor seeks to wear a necklace with cross despite the no-jewelry company dress code, a Muslim saleswoman wants to wear a headscarf on the job even though her manager has stated this would be bad for business, factory workers request facilities separate from the locker rooms so they can pray during work breaks. These cases that have recently come up in various European countries illustrate that equality and non discrimination on the basis of religion, and freedom of religion in the workplace is of crucial importance in today‟s Europe.
Considering the time workers spend in the workplace and the increasing importance of religious identity amongst certain groups, potential tensions between professional and religious duties, and requests for de facto accommodations are bound to keep coming up. Thus, within the larger RELIGARE project a key role is set for the work package on religion and the workplace.
RELIGARE does not aim to „re-invent the wheel‟ but rather to add value to the field by filling perceived gaps in the existing research. The work being organised in different stages, this paper fits within the first status questionis phase where available materials are collected and reviewed. This paper makes a modest attempt to describe the available research and issues in the intersecting fields of labour law, religious freedom and non-discrimination.

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