A letter from the ISSRNC President, Sarah Pike
February 5, 2016
It was a pleasure to welcome new and old members, as well as honored guests, to the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture’s Tenth Anniversary Conference – “Religion, Science and the Future.” We held our first conference in Gainesville, Florida in 2006 and we were pleased to be back after a decade of work building our field internationally. The Society has been very active since its inauguration, publishing a quarterly journal and sponsoring or co-sponsoring international conferences on an almost annual basis. The journal and conferences have provided rich venues for discussing cutting edge research in the interdisciplinary fields that contribute to new understandings of religion, nature and culture. As the Society looks forward from its first decade, issues concerning religion, nature and culture in the context of the future are on our minds and in the news more than ever.
I want to sincerely thank all who attended our conference this year for the lively discussions and debates that demonstrated what a vibrant community of scholars we are. I hope that you will help us chart the way into our second decade and invite you to let me know your ideas about how the society might better serve you now and in the future.
As President of the ISSRNC, I want to take this opportunity to thank our institutional host, the University of Florida, as well as the conference co-coordinators, Bron Taylor and Whitney Bauman. A special thanks to the conference organizing committee, program committee, awards committee and student volunteers. Many of them put countless hours into organizing the event and making sure everything went smoothly. Also, my gratitude to the board of the ISSRNC, the ISSRNC Communications Director, Amanda Nichols, Joseph Heizman, and Daniel Whittaker, all of whom contributed significant time and energy to assist with this conference.
Many thanks to our sponsors: The University of Florida College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the University of Florida Office of Research, Equinox Press, the John Templeton Foundation, DeGruyter Publishing House, the Institute for Religion in the Age of Science, the University of Florida’s Department of Religion, Center for Spirituality and Health, Center for Humanities and the Public Sphere, and Center for Global Islamic Studies.
Finally, on behalf of the Board for the ISSRNC, I extend my thanks to all of you for traveling to Florida and contributing to these critical scholarly conversations.
Sarah M. Pike
Professor of Comparative Religion