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CODEC is a Research Centre of Durham University exploring the interfaces between the Bible, the digital environment and contemporary culture.

A codec is a device, either physical or virtual, hardware or software, for translating, re-coding, re-engineering the analogue and the digital. CODEC is not an acronym: it is a name.

We want to see how the contemporary world interacts with the world of the theology and religion - particularly the Christian faith story.

How do we communicate an ancient faith in a digital world?

CODEC began in 2009 with a nationwide survey of Biblical Literacy in the UK. Since then, we have developed a host of projects, research, conferences, learning opportunities, all exploring Christian Communication in the 21st century, many of them making use of social media and online technology.

We’ve worked alongside many churches and agencies exploring how we can improve our communication of the Gospel and how the Bible might be communicated in meaningful ways in contemporary society.

We explore the interfaces between theology, media and digital culture, focussing especially on religious communication, theology and sacred texts (especially the Bible), aiming to research and transform religious discourse within and about new digital media. The centre provides a focus for international research into the impact of the digital environment on religious tradition, practice, and education, and explore religious identity within the digital world. The research is not limited to any confessional stance or religious affiliation.

CODEC’s research focuses on the three areas of:

  • Biblical/Scriptural literacy
  • Homiletics and Imagination
  • Human identity and religious practice within the digital age.

CODEC’s impact aims to be both academic and public through:

  • Peer-reviewed publication
  • Conferences and seminars
  • Research-led courses
  • Engagement with religious practitioners, religious bodies and society in general.

CODEC works together with other research centres and departments at St John's College, the University of Durham, and the Institute for Advanced Studies, to provide interdisciplinary research outcomes to enhance the digital engagement of religious communities and to enhance their digital provision and training.

Read the latest news happenings on the blog.

CODEC, St John’s College,
3, South Bailey