We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Otherwise, we'll assume you're OK to continue.

Durham University

Department of Theology and Religion

Common Awards Research Network

© Nevit Dilmen [CC BY-SA 3.0 ( or GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons;


The establishment of the Common Awards partnership created new possibilities for collaborative research – for thinking together about the future of ministry and mission, and about the challenges and possibilities facing theological education. Our hope is:

  • to identify the most significant research topics emerging around the partnership;
  • to gather groups of people from the theological education institutions, the churches, and the university sector with an interest in those topics;
  • to provide some of the resources those groups need in order to pursue those investigations as seriously as possible;
  • to disseminate the findings of these investigations widely.

We hope that this thinking will help shape the future development of the Common Awards, and that it will contribute to the thinking of the churches more broadly.

See the Vision for Common Awards Research for a more detailed statement about this agenda.

On this page:


Some of our work is clustered around particular themes, chosen because they are already the subject of exciting work, and because we believe they have particular significance for the future of theological education. See our Themes page for much more detail.

Current and upcoming themes:

  1. Receptivity (start: 2017/18)
  2. Theological Reflection (start: 2018/19)
  3. Bodies and Pedagogies (start: 2019/20)

Seedcorn Grants

If you work in an institution offering Common Awards programmes, or are in other ways associated with the partnership, and have an idea for relevant collaborative research, you might consider applying for one of our Seedcorn Grants.

Grants are available for research activity on any relevant theme, but we are also particularly interested in proposals that relate to our current theme of theological reflection. A total of £12,000 is available, and individual applications can be for any amount up to that total. These grants are intended to stimulate research that can feed in to the on-going development of our practice and thinking as theological educators.

Full details of the current round, and of past projects funded by the scheme, are available.

Annual Conference for Theological Educators, and other Events

The main research event we help run each year is the Annual Conference for Theological Educators, held each July in partnership with the Theological Educators' Network. Places on the conference are free for staff engaged in teaching or administering Common Awards programmes.

Other Projects

We have run or hosted a number of other projects associated with Common Awards. Full details are available here, including information about:


The Common Awards Research Network is supported by a dedicated team in Durham. Full details.

Common Awards Research Bulletin, May 2018

Common Awards Research Bulletin, May 2018

Now available for download.