The Study of Religions Department at University College Cork was founded in 2008 as the first department in Ireland dedicated to the non-confessional, non-theological study of religions. The department, which focuses on teaching and research on religions in the modern world (19th-21st century), delivers an undergraduate programme, entitled Religions and Global Diversity, and postgraduate programmes in the study of religions and anthropology as well as a PhD programme.
Staff within the department have a range of specialisms including new religious movements, contemporary Islam, indigenous religions, Buddhism, contemporary Christianities, folk religion, gender and religion, South Asian religions, Japanese religions, contemporary paganism, religion and state security and material religion.
The Department has hosted important nationally and internationally funded research projects focused on Islam in Ireland, Ireland and the globalization of Buddhism, and religion and the secret police in Eastern Europe. The Department also hosts the Marginalised and Endangered Worldviews Study Centre (MEWSC). The 19th Annual EASR conference will be first to be hosted in Ireland.