New Journal Article on “Religious Diversity and Social Integration” out now!

My article on religious diversity and social integration in a cross-cultural comparison has been published:

R. Traunmüller (2013): Religiöse Diversität und Sozialintegration im internationalen Vergleich. Kölner Zeitschrift für Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie 65: 437-465. 


Following Robert D. Putnam’s (2007) thesis that ethnic diversity weakens social cohesion, this study addresses the social consequences of religious diversity. Instead of contrasting social-psychological mechanisms it takes a macro-sociological perspective that focuses on different structural forms of religious diversity and relates them to the trust relations within a population. The empirical results based on a cross-national comparison of 41 European and Non-European societies show that religious macro-structures are indeed related to social trust. But contrary to Putnam’s “hunkering down” thesis religious diversity does not lead to social anomia and isolation but has different effects on social trust toward religious in- and out-groups. Key is the result that different macro-structural forms of religious diversity have different consequences for social cohesion. The question, whether religious diversity poses a threat or opportunity for the social integration of society, therefore crucially depends on its concrete form.