Academy of Finland
Funding decision
Applicant / Contact person Hjelm, Titus
Organisation University of Helsinki
Project title
The Religious Legitimation of Politics and the Political Legitimation of Religion in Finland (LegitRel)
Decision No. 334157
Decision date 28.05.2020
Funding period 01.09.2020 - 31.08.2024
Funding 480 000
WebFOCUS Report
Project description
There has been much talk about the ‘return of religion’ in politics in recent decades. While Finnish politics has been insulated from some of the global debates, issues such as migration, human rights and equality legislation, and the legal status of minority religious communities has brought religion back on the agenda of parliamentary politics. The project focuses on how religion is constructed in party and parliamentary discourses, and how the legislative process reflects—or does not reflect—voter ideas about the legitimate role of religion in politics. Empirically, the analysis employs a triangulation of qualitative (political texts) and quantitative (voter survey) data and appropriate methods (content analysis, discourse analysis, statistical methods). Using these approaches, LegitRel provides an unprecedented analysis of the role of religion in Finnish politics and challenges the notion that increased visibility equals increased vitality of religion.