Professor John Atherton

Visiting Research Professor


Attended University College, London (BA Hon, 1960: Modern History); College of the Resurrection, Mirfield (1960-62: seminary training); Manchester University 1970-9 (MPhil and PhD in Theology).


Born, Bolton, Lancashire, 1939. Ordained Anglican deacon, priest, Aberdeen (1960-4), curacy in Bury; Priest in charge, Gorbals, Glasgow; Incumbent inner city Manchester (1964-74). Consultant Faith in the City process and report (1962-5).  Director William Temple Foundation, Company Secretary, Trustee and Honorary Senior Research Fellow (1974-present).  Member, Joint Advisory Group, Centre for Faiths and Public Policy, Chester University (2010-present), where I am also Visiting Professor in Religion, Ethics and Economics.  Doctor of Sacred Theology, Uppsala University, Sweden and Visiting Professor.  William Scheide Fellow in Theology, Center for Theological Inquiry, Princeton, USA, 2013.  Main research interest increasingly focussed on relationships between religious studies and economics, including engagement with the multidisciplinary construct of wellbeing (with economics, psychology, sociology and economic history).  

Published work

Publications include articles, reviews, books – 8 monographs, 14 part authors; Editor of Crucible, The Christian Journal of Social Ethics. 

Selected publications include: Public Theology for Changing Times, SPCK, 2000; Marginalisation, SCM Press, 2003; Transfiguring Capitalism: An Enquiry into Religion and Global Change, SCM Press, 2008; The Practices of Happiness: Political Economy, Religion and Wellbeing (with Elaine Graham and Ian Steedman), Routledge, 2011.  Currently contracted to produce Religion and Progressive Change: A Manifesto for a New Religious Studies; SCM Press, 2014.