Helge Årsheim

Postdoctoral Fellow - Fagseksjonen
Image of Helge Årsheim
Norwegian version of this page
Phone +47-22850364
Mobile phone 41472911 +4741472911
Room v103 (annex)
Visiting address Blindernveien 9
Postal address Postboks 1023 Blindern 0315 OSLO
Other affiliations Faculty of Theology


I hold a Master's degree in Religious Studies from the University of Bergen (2007) and a PhD from the Faculty of Theology at the University of Oslo (2015). I have previously worked for the United Nations Association of Norway and the Norwegian Immigration Appeals Board. I have been working at the Faculty of Theology since January 2010.

I created and edited the now-defunct Plurel Blog (2011-2014), an academic platform for the dissemination and discussion of scholarly works on religion in the public sphere. I am one of the editors of the collaborative scholarly blog Religion: Going Public (2016->), and the editor for Norway at EUREL, a database of socio-legal data on religion in Europe, and LEGIREL, a database of legislation on religious activities and religious bodies. I am also an occasional contributor to The Immanent Frame, a website run by the US Social Science Research Council, and the creator and editor of the websites of GOBA and ProNoLa (see more below). I tweet irregularly, and not always on religion-related matters. Some of my unpublished and published work is available at my academia.edu profile.

Fields of Interest

My main area of interest is the interrelationship between law and religion, which was the subject of both my Master's thesis at the University of Bergen and my PhD dissertation at the University of Oslo. I am presently engaged in two research projects that deal with different aspects of this relationship: Under the Good Protestant, Bad Religion project (GOBA, funded by the Research Council of Norway, 2014-2018), I examine how Norwegian and Canadian authorities deal with the religious conversion claims of asylum seekers, and the ways in which indigenous peoples frame their religious identities.

Under the Protestant Legacies in Nordic Law project (ProNoLa, funded by Humanities in the European Research Area, 2016-2019), I will examine the role of Protestant theology in the creation of legal rules on religious minorities in the Nordic region in the 20th century (click here to download an abstract of this project). I am also affiliated with the research project Value Politics: The role of religion in international relations, where I have contributed with research on the role of religion at the United Nations, and with the Oslo Coalition on Freedom of Religion or Belief, where I have worked with the politicisation of the freedom of religion or belief internationally. I am a member of the International Consortium of Law and Religion Studies (ICLARS) and the Law and Religion Scholars Network (LARSN).

Teaching and Supervision

Lecturer, TFF 1002, Multi-religious Norway

Lecturer, TFF 3001, Humanism, Secularity and Religion

Supervision RESA 4302 MA thesis, Julie Elise Tronstad: Afghan Religion in American Army Pre-Deployment Schooling, PhD: Erlend Hovdkinn From




Tags: Law and Religion, Secularity, Religious Studies, Postcolonial


Most recent blog post:

Is Norway a Post-Secular Society? at religiongoingpublic.com, 13.09.2016

Most recent publication:

2016. “Religion and International Organizations”. In Ian Hurd, Ian Johnstone, and Jacob Katz Cogan (eds), The Oxford Handbook of International Organizations. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 490-507.

  • Årsheim, Helge (2016). Secularist suspicion and legal pluralism at the United Nations. Religion and Human Rights: an international journal.  ISSN 1871-031X.  11(2), s 166- 188 . doi: 10.1163/18710328-12341303
  • Årsheim, Helge (2015). Om nokre religiøse unntaksreglar i norsk rett :. Kirke og kultur.  ISSN 0023-186X.  120(3), s 284- 298
  • Årsheim, Helge & Slotte, Pamela (2015). The Ministerial Exception — Comparative Perspectives. Oxford Journal of Law and Religion.  ISSN 2047-0770.  4(2), s 171- 198
  • Årsheim, Helge (2014). Hvilken religion, hva slags vitenskap? – En undersøkelse av religionskategorien i universitetsstudier i religionsvitenskap og teologi. Teologisk Tidsskrift.  ISSN 1893-0263.  3(1), s 50- 72
  • Årsheim, Helge (2014). Legal Secularism? - Differing Notions of Religion in International and Norwegian Law, In Trygve E Wyller; Rosemarie Van Den Breemer & Jose Casanova (ed.),  Secular and Sacred? The Scandinavian Case of Religion in Human Rights, Law and Public Space.  Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht.  ISBN 978-3-525-60449-6.  7.  s 123 - 151

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Published Feb. 4, 2010 1:45 PM - Last modified June 23, 2017 12:17 PM