PRRUCS Publications & Media

Publications on Faith, Reason, and Civil Society


PRRUCS Vol. III.1 (Summer 2023): What is Life?

PRRUCS Volume III.1 (Summer 2023): “What is Life?” ~ The Summer 2022 Magi Conference Proceedings and Post-Conference Reflections, edited by Dr. Jessie Taylor

    1. Editor’s Introduction
    2. “Belonging to this World and the Next” by Celia Deane-Drummond
    3. Astrobiology
      1. Initial Reflections by Marie George
      2. Initial Reflections by Jonathan Lunine
      3. Post-Conference Reflections by Marie George
      4. Post-Conference Reflections by Jonathan Lunine
    4. Linguistics
      1. “Some Initial Thoughts on Language” by Jonathan Tran
      2. “Learning Language and Becoming Human” by Charles Yang
      3. Post-Conference Reflections by Jonathan Tran
      4. Post-Conference Reflections by Charles Yang
    5. Artificial Intelligence
      1. “Can Robots be Persons?” by Anne Foerst
      2. “Creating in Our Image: The Problem with a Top-Down Approach to Life” by Noreen Herzfeld
      3. Post-Conference Reflections by Anne Foerst
      4. Post-Conference Reflections by Noreen Herzfeld
    6. Behavioral Genetics and Human Flourishing
      1. “What is Nature in Nature-Nurture?” By Eric Turkheimer
      2. “Genetics, Human Nature, and Human Flourishing” by Dylan Belton
      3. Post-Conference Reflections by Eric Turkheimer
      4. Post-Conference Reflections by Dylan Belton
    7. Health
      1. “Do Biologists Believe in the Existence of Life?” by Stephen Meredith
      2. “What is Life? A Theological Response” by Brendan Sammon
      3. Post-Conference Reflections by Stephen Meredith
      4. Post-Conference Reflections by Brendan Sammon
    8. Conclusion by Michelle M. Francl


PRRUCS Annual Issue: Vol. II (Spring 2021)

PRRUCS is pleased to announce its second annual collection of essays: Faith-Based Initiative at 25 Years: A Common Ground for Common Good Conversation. With the new administration’s re-establishment of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, Dr. Stanley Carlson-Thies, a co-chair of the PRRUCS Common Ground for Common Good (C2G2) Project, reflected this spring on the 25 year arc of the faith-based initiative in his HistPhil essay, “The Biden Partnerships Plan is Faith-Based Initiative 5.0.”  Republished with permission below as Chapter 1, this seminal article elicited ten comments from other C2G2 colleagues, who respond from a diversity of experience and conviction, offering new insight into the past and future of government-funded faith-based social service.  The collection concludes with an Afterword by PRRUCS Faculty Director, John J. DiIulio, Jr., the inaugural director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives.

Introduction: First 100 Days, Last 25 Years, and the Next “Godly Republic”? by Daniel J. M. Cheely

1. The Biden Partnerships Plan Is Faith-Based Initiative 5.0 by Stanley Carlson-Thies

2. New Faith-Based Frontiers: Black Lives Matter & “Dying of Whiteness” by Samuel Atchison

3. Will the Decline in Faith Institutions Harm the Faith-Based Initiative? by Jane Eisner

4. George W. Bush and Domestic Policy: The Faith-Based Office at its Most Personal by Tim Goeglein

5. Bush’s Faith-Based Program Helped Children of the Incarcerated by W. Wilson Goode

6. Where Does It End? The Religious Demand for Government Support Without Accountability to All Taxpayers by Marci Hamilton

7. Religion in the Public Square: Not so Divided After All by Michele Margolis

8. Faith That Hurts and Faith That Heals by Sister Mary Scullion

9. The New Faith-Based Office and The Case for Charitable Pluralism by Ron Sider

10. Government and Faith-Based Social Service: The Good & the Ugly by Kathleen Kennedy Townsend

11. Muddling the Faith Based Concept by Tevi Troy

Afterword: Faith-Based, Then, Now, and Next by John J. DiIulio, Jr.

PRRUCS Annual Issue: Vol. I (Summer 2020)

In Summer 2020, PRRUCS released its inaugural annual volume entitled Should Groups Matter? Religion, Freedom, and Contemporary Civil Society, co-edited by Dr. Luke Sheahan and Dr. Daniel Cheely. This timely collection of essays features leading scholars of diverse outlook who deftly address current issues in a manner that is broadly accessible.

1. Co-editors’ Introduction

2. “Reflections on Citizenship while Staying at Home”, by Catherine E. Wilson

3. “Can we Save our Toxic Political Atmosphere?”, by Lia Howard

4. “Ordering Parental Rights, Children’s Autonomy, and Civic Education: A Philosophical Foundation for Public Policy” by Melissa Moschella

5. “Dual Allegiances? American Citizenship and Religious Obligation” by Rogers Smith

6. “Faithful Americans: Catholic Reconciliations of Identity in Early America” by Michael D. Breidenbach

7. “Freedoms Like a Fox: The Constitutional Community and First Amendment” by Luke C. Sheahan

8. “Pluralism in the Chinese Political Community: A Nisbetian Perspective on the State of Chinese Non-Governmental Organizations and Civil Society” by Luke C. Sheahan

PRUCCS Publications

Jewish Counter Culture Oral History Project:

In 2018 PRRUCS cosponsored the development of a major oral American religious history project across multiple universities co-led by Dr. Beth Wenger, who is Associate Dean for Graduate Studies of Penn SAS, Berg Professor and former Chair of the History Department, as well as Resident Senior Fellow of PRRUCS. Commemorating the 50th anniversary of the founding of Havurat Shalom in 1968, this recently concluded project builds a documentary record of the historic effort to reinvent Jewish communal worship and social life outside the framework of traditional synagogue denominations and structures, featuring interviews with dozens of the movements key members, which can be surveyed here and here.

PRRUCS Publications

“Halo Effects”:

In 2016, PRRUCS released a report prepared by Joseph P. Tierney, executive director of the Robert A. Fox Leadership Program at Penn, entitled “How Catholic Places Serve Civic Purposes: The Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s Economic Halo Effects” — also known as the Hager Report, since the research was cosponsored by a generous gift from Mr. Francis Hager. The release of the report was marked by a public event featuring keynote remarks from the Archbishop of Philadelphia and covered by the Philadelphia Inquirer and other local newspapers.

Halo Effect

PRRUCS Occasional Papers:

PRRUCS publishes occasional papers on a wide range of topics that engage with faith, reason and civil society, including:

PRRUCS also supports empirical studies and surveys on religion through its PESS.


PRRUCS Student Voices:

PRRUCS Senior Staff and Affiliates also collaborate with Collegium to cultivate student voices, editors, and writers through Collegium’s affiliated journals, Dappled Things and Genealogies of Modernity as well as through the CI podcast, The Wheel and the blog, The Commonplace Book, both of which can be found here.

Student Voices

Featured Videos

The Halo Effect and the Economic Value of Faith Based Organizations

God, Darwin, and the Cosmos: Is Faith Still Relevant in a Scientific Age?

Dual Allegiances in America: Christian, Jewish & Muslim Perspectives on Civil & Religious Identities

Humanities for Humanity: Towards an Ethic of Encounter & Civic Engagement

Modernity in Orthodoxy

Living the Truth: On the Relevance of Elizabeth Anscombe’s Thought Today

Religious Charter Schools: Constitutional? (Part One)

Religious Charter Schools: Constitutional? (Part Two)

For more PRRUCS videos, see here. For more Collegium Institute videos, see here.

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