War and Peace and Religion: Religious Freedom during Russian-Ukrainian Conflict

Dmytro Vovk's picture
Call for Papers
January 25, 2018
Subject Fields: 
Political Science, Law and Legal History, Religious Studies and Theology, Russian or Soviet History / Studies


International Conference hosted by

Center for Rule of Law and Religion Studies (Ukraine) in cooperation with the International Center for Law and Religion Studies (USA)


War and Peace and Religion:

Religious Freedom during Russian-Ukrainian Conflict


12-13 April 2018, CRLRS, Kharkiv, Ukraine




            The conference will focus on three interrelated questions focusing on how the religious freedom situation in Russia and Ukraine has been changing in the period of 2014–2017 due to the conflict between the countries.

First, we are planning to discuss threats to and violations of religious freedom arising in the annexed Crimea or in the Donbass, where fighting between the Ukrainian governmental forces and pro-Russian separatist paramilitary groups backed and ruled by Russia is still going on.

Second, we are interested in the evolution of church and state relations internally in both the Russian Federation and Ukraine. We would like to explore how this conflict has affected state policies and legal frameworks broadly across the field of religion and law.  In particular, we would like to discuss whether there are any links between the conflict and strengthening pressure on religious minorities in Russia or rapprochement of Ukrainian state and religions. Would the ban on Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia have been possible if there were no “Crimea is ours!”, or whether both the annexation and persecution of Jehovah’s Witnesses serve as examples of a general transformation of the political regime in Russia? Would the Ukrainian state make so many efforts to support and promote the idea of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church if there were no war in Donbas?

            Third, we are planning to explore the role of Ukrainian and Russian churches in the conflict, as well as the influence of the conflict on the inter-church relations and dialogue. In particular, we would like to pay attention to conflicts between the Ukrainian Orthodox Churches of the Moscow and Kyiv Patriarchates and the state involvement in them, the role of the conflict in relations of the Russian state and Russian Orthodox Church, as well as the recent attempt to develop a dialogue between the latter and the Kyiv Patriarchate.


            We expect participants to submit applications primarily in the area of Political Science, Law and Religion, and Religious Studies, but we will also consider other applications on the relevant problematics.


            After the conference, the organizers are planning to publish a volume in one of the leading publishing houses.


Important dates:

January 25, 2018 – Deadline for application submissions

February 1, 2018 – Notification of acceptance

April 1, 2018 – Deadline for first draft submissions (to be disseminated to the discussants)

July 1, 2018 – Submission of the final paper for peer-reviewing procedure


            Applications should be sent to dmtr.vovk@gmail.com (in Word or PDF format) and include:

- an abstract (max. 500 words)

- a one-page CV including institutional affiliation and contact details


The conference language is English. Conference leader – Dr. Dmytro Vovk, Director of the Center for Rule of Law and Religion Studies at the Yaroslav the Wise National Law University.


Organizers will cover travel and accommodation costs of presenters.


Contact Info: 

Dmytro Vovk, PhD, Director of the Center for Rule of Law and Religion Studies at the Yaroslav the Wise National Law University

Contact Email: