April 23, 2015

Live Event: The Future of World Religions

What the Findings from the Pew Research Center’s Global Religious Projections Mean for Society, Foreign Policy and National Security

This event has concluded. An archived version of this video will be available in the near future.

Thursday, April 23, 10 A.M. to 11:30 A.M.

The Pew Research Center’s new demographic projections– the first formal forecasts using data on age, fertility, mortality, migration and religious switching for the world’s eight major religious groups – finds that the religious profile of the world is rapidly changing. By 2050, the number of Muslims around the world will nearly equal the number of Christians. With the exception of Buddhists, all of the world’s major religious groups are poised for at least some growth in the coming decades. Meanwhile, the share of those who do not identify with a religious group will decline.

What can we predict about the effects of an increasingly religious planet?

Will these projections lead to an increase in religious conflict, especially in the Middle East, South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa?

Can we expect that nationalism rooted in religious identity will grow, especially in India and Europe?

A panel of experts will tackle these questions – and many more – raised by the center’s new projections of the world’s changing religious composition.


Jack A. Goldstone
Virginia E. and John T. Hazel Professor of Public Policy, George Mason University

David Voas
Deputy Director, Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex

Presentation of Findings

Conrad Hackett
Demographer, Pew Research Center

Moderated by

Alan Cooperman
Director of Religion Research, Pew Research Center