News // Fenggang Yang receives $3.5 million grant

Fenggang Yang, a Purdue University professor of sociology, has received $3.5 million from the John Templeton Foundation to map the religious and spiritual landscape in China and study how religions have flourished in the post-Communist country.

The three-year "Chinese Religious Markets and Spiritual Capital" project begins Aug. 16. Yang is the director of Purdue's Center on Religion and Chinese Society, and he is partnering with The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

"There have been religious revivals in China in the last several decades even though religion was entirely eradicated in the 1960s and 1970s," said Yang, the current president of the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion. "Because religion affects individual lives, community and society, it is important to understand how faith in the world’s largest country is evolving. The first part of this grant will literally map and track geographically what religions are thriving across the country in both urban and rural settings."

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