Faithful Measures

New Methods in the Measurement of Religion

400 pages

29 illustrations

October, 2017

ISBN: 9781479877102



Add to Cart Available: 9/15/2017

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Roger Finke is Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Religious Studies and International Affairs at the Pennsylvania State University and is Director of the Association of Religion Data Archives (, funded by the John Templeton Foundation and the Lilly Endowment Inc.

All books by Roger Finke

Christopher Bader is Professor of Sociology at Chapman University and affiliated with the Institute for Religion, Economics and Culture (IRES).  He is Associate Director of the Association of Religion Data Archives ( and principal investigator on the Chapman University Survey of American Fears, as well as coauthor of Paranormal America: Ghost Encounters, UFO Sightings, Bigfoot Hunts, and Other Curiosities in Religion and Culture, second edition (also available from NYU Press). 

All books by Christopher D. Bader

A venture into the art and science of measuring religion in everyday life  
In an era of rapid technological advances, the measures and methods used to generate data about religion have undergone remarkably little change. Faithful Measures pushes the study of religion into the 21st century by evaluating new and existing measures of religion and introducing new methods for tapping into religious behaviors and beliefs.                                                           
This book offers a global and innovative approach, with chapters on the intersection of religion and new technology, such as smart phone apps, Google Ngrams, crowdsourcing data, and Amazon buying networks. It also shows how old methods can be improved by using new technology to create online surveys with experimental designs and by developing new ways of mining data from existing information. Chapter contributors thoroughly explain how to employ these new techniques, and offer fresh insights into understanding the complex topic of religion in modern life.  
Beyond its quantitative contributions, Faithful Measures will be an invaluable resource for inspiring a new wave of creativity and exploration in our connected world


  • "While seeming simple at first glance, measuring religion well in social science is exceedingly difficult, especially when comparing different societies and religious traditions. Serious efforts to improve and diversify measures of religion have, with few exceptions, been woefully lacking. Faithful Measures offers a decisive intervention in that situation, which both contributes and points the way to further advances. It is well worth the read for all scholars in the field."

    —Christian Smith, Wm. R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Sociology, University of Notre Dame

  • Few scholars have done more than Finke and Bader to teach us how to measure religion. In Faithful Measures they and their collaborators show readers the best surveys on religion have to offer as well as the newest innovations for understanding religion. Their book should be read by anyone concerned about how religion is changing across the globe and how we might better measure those changes.

    —Elaine Howard Ecklund, Herbert S. Autrey Chair in Social Sciences, Rice University