Dr. David M. Kirkham, Senior Fellow and Regional Advisor for the European Union and the Council of Europe at the International Center for Law and Religion Studies (ICLRS) and principal ICLRS liaison with the Strasbourg Consortium, participated in four major FORB conferences in Europe in May and June 2010.
Dr. Kirkham presented a paper, “Religious Intolerance and Discrimination: Reflections on Causes and Contermeasures,” at the conference “Religious Discrimination in Selected European States,” held 27-28 May 2010 at Karl-Franzens University in Graz, Austria. Organizers of the conference included Univ.Prof.Dr. Christian Brünner of the Graz University Law Faculty, Prof. DDDr.hc. Gerhard Besier of the Philosophy Faculty of the University of Dresden, Willy Fautré of Human Rights without Frontiers in Brussels, and Attorney Dr. Reinhard Kohlhofer of Vienna.
Dr. Kirkham then joined more than forty academic and ecclesiastical participants from Europe in the international symposium “The Monotheistic Religions and the Human Liberties,” held 31 May – 1 June 2010 at “Ovidius” University of Constantza in Romania. Dr. Kirkham presented the paper “Islam in the European Court of Human Rights: Challenges and Developments.” This landmark event was sponsored by The Centre for Religious and Juridical-Canonical Study of the Three Monotheistic Religions (Mosaic, Christian and Islamic) in partnership with the Romanian Academy of Sciences and the Archdiocese of Tomis.
At Central European University in Bupapest on 4-5 June, Dr. Kirkham joined Professor W. Cole Durham, Jr., ICLRS Director, in representing the Center at “Religion in the Public Square,” the 18th Annual Conference on “The Individual v. the State”, where Professor Durham presented the paper “Civil Religion, Reverence and Secularity: Comparative Perspectives on the Place of Religion in Public Life.” Conference conveners were University Professor András Sajó, Founding Dean of Legal Studies at CEU, at present on leave to serve as a judge on the European Court of Human Rights, and Professor Renáta Uitz, Chair of CEU’s Comparative Constitutional Law program.
Dr. Kirkham was also one of the key organizers and a panel participant at the Oxford Conference on Law and Religion on 7-9 June, and was a key participant in the meeting of the Strasbourg Consortium at Oxford’s Harris Manchester College on 8 June.