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Consortium for Interdisciplinary Research (CIR) UC Berkeley 440 Stephens Hall, MC 2340 Berkeley, CA 94720 510.642.1328

Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion

Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion

The Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion (BCSR) advances creative and critical scholarship on religion. BCSR faculty research, public programming, and student mentorship drive new approaches to the study of religion and its intellectual and material contexts. BCSR disseminates this work for critical reflection and public discussion through its media platforms and engagement with local and global audiences.

The Program in Critical Theory

The Program in Critical Theory

The Program in Critical Theory enables graduate students already enrolled in UC Berkeley Ph.D. programs from across the social sciences, arts, and humanities to obtain certification of a Designated-Emphasis specialization in Critical Theory. The Program also offers graduate fellowships, hosts international scholars, and presents lectures, seminars, and other events for the wider campus community and local public.

Digital Humanities at Berkeley

Digital Humanities at Berkeley

Digital Humanities at Berkeley supports the thoughtful application of digital tools and methodologies to humanistic inquiry by offering project consulting, summer workshops, grants, courses, and more. It is supported by a generous grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, with additional support from the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research.



The Consortium for Interdisciplinary Research (CIR) was established in 2013 by UC Berkeley’s College of Letters and Sciences: Division of Arts and Humanities with a mission to support the programming and development of several dynamic interdisciplinary research units in the humanities and social sciences.

Currently CIR serves The Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion, The Program in Critical Theory, and the Digital Humanities at Berkeley, three programs led by a highly diverse community of 200 faculty, advisors, scholars and graduate students from nearly 30 campus departments and schools including Anthropology, African Diaspora Studies, Art History, Comparative Literature, East Asian Languages and Culture, Education, English, Ethnic Studies, French, Geography, Gender and Women's Studies, German, History, Law, Music, Near Eastern Studies, Philosophy, Political Science, Rhetoric, Sociology, and Spanish & Portuguese.
Working closely with faculty leadership, the staff of CIR develops and manages the programmatic and administrative activities for these units.

We produce lectures, conferences, events, and publications; organize residencies for visiting scholars and post-docs; cultivate and solicit funding; administer graduate student fellowships and faculty research awards; and manage the academic program of the Critical Theory DE.

We customize our work based on the unique and independent ideas, concepts, and missions of the units we support and believe that professional presentation and best practices are critical in building visibility and increasing the reception of new and emerging research.

News and Features

November 27, 2017: Berkeley Public Theology Program: "On the History of Religions and the Study of Islam." Travis Zadeh, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies; Director of Undergraduate Studies for Modern Middle East Studies, Yale University

Islam plays a powerful role in American public discourse. Across this often contentious landscape, numerous voices can be heard defining and contesting the nature of Islam. These definitional problems also shape academic debates, where the seemingly basic question of what is Islam has received renewed attention. This lecture addresses the place and history of Islam in the modern academic study of religion in light of discursive structures that are designed...

October 26, 2017: "Where Have All The Leaders Gone?" Michael Hardt, Professor of Literature, Duke University

We continue to witness each year the eruption of “leaderless” social movements. From North Africa and the Middle East to Europe, the Americas, and East Asia, movements have left journalists, political analysts, police forces, and governments disoriented and perplexed. Activists too have struggled to understand and evaluate the power and effectiveness of horizontal movements. Why have the movements, which express the needs and desires of so many, not been able to achieve lasting change and a more just society? Many assume that if only social movements could find new leaders they would...


Khai Thu Nguyen

Khai Thu Nguyen, Associate Director

Khai Thu Nguyen is the Associate Director of the Consortium for Interdisciplinary Research (CIR). She has directed language and student affairs programs at UC Berkeley Extension, coordinated faculty teaching support at Center for Teaching and Learning, and served as a lecturer. Her multi-national theater productions and research have been funded by Fulbright-Hays, UC Pacific Rim, and the Royal Norwegian Embassy. Her writings appear in Neoliberalism and Global Theatres, Portrayals of Americans on the World Stage, and Asian Theatre Journal. Khai holds a Ph.D. in Performance Studies from UC Berkeley.

Breana George

Breana George, Program Coordinator

Breana George is a Program Coordinator for the Consortium for Interdisciplinary Research (CIR), the UC Berkeley management unit supporting the Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion and the Program in Critical Theory.
Sam Mountain

Sam Mountain, Work Study

Sam Mountain is a sophomore majoring in Integrative Biology and Political Science. In his free time, he reads Foucault and writes biographies on university websites.
Brandon Schneider

Brandon Schneider, Events and Student Affairs Coordinator

Brandon Schneider is the Events and Students Affairs Coordinator for the Consortium for Interdisciplinary Research. He previously served as the Assistant Director of The Program for the Study of Italy at Berkeley, where he has also taught various humanities-related courses. He is the Vice-Chair of the Arts Committee of Albany, California. Brandon earned a PhD in Italian Studies with a Certificate in New Media from Berkeley, and an M.A. in Political Science from the UNC Chapel Hill.
Beverly Yan

Beverly Yan, Work Study

Beverly Yan is a senior majoring in History with a minor in Asian American Studies. When she isn't at school, she's likely the one answering email inquiries to the Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion or the Program in Critical Theory.
Patty Dunlap

Patty Dunlap, Program and Grants Coordinator

Patty Dunlap is the Program and Grants Coordinator for the Consortium for Interdisciplinary Research. She previously served in Corporate and Foundation Relations on campus, and worked in the pharmaceutical industry for nearly two decades prior. Patty graduated from UC Irvine with a BA and MBA in Psychology, and now lives her husband, dog, and four children.