Academic Staff

The activities of the Centre are supported by several academic staff. Between them, they offer a rich variety of disciplinary approaches to the study of World Christianity. The academic staff at the Centre teach and direct the MTh courses and supervise PhD in World Christianity.

Core Staff

Dr Alexander ChowDr Alexander Chow (Co-Director) completed his PhD in theology at the University of Birmingham and a postdoctoral fellowship at Renmin University of China, and joined the University of Edinburgh in 2013. His research interests include the global expressions of Christian theology, broadly speaking. He has written or edited five books, mostly in Chinese Christian theology or World Christianity.
Dr Emma Wild-WoodProf. Emma Wild-Wood (Co-Director) completed her PhD in the Centre for the Study of World Christianity at the University of Edinburgh under Dr Jack Thompson. She taught in Bunia in DR Congo and in Uganda for a number of years. Before coming back to Edinburgh, Emma was the Director of the Cambridge Centre for Christianity Worldwide and Lecturer in World Christianities in the Faculty of Divinity of the University of Cambridge.
Dr Pedro FeitozaDr Pedro Feitoza is a scholar of religion in Latin America with particular interests in the history of evangelical expansion in Brazil and the renewal of Catholic thought and practice in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. In 2019, he completed a PhD in History at Emmanuel College, Cambridge. Before taking up his current appointment he was a postdoctoral fellow at the Brazilian Centre of Analysis and Planning (CEBRAP), São Paulo.
Dr Kirsteen MurrayDr Kirsteen Murray completed her PhD at the University of Edinburgh in 2001 and began teaching at New College at that time. She is a historian, whose main interest is the relationship between religion and popular culture. Her research has been in the transmission of Christianity in the Pacific Islands and she also has an interest in gender and popular religiosity in Early Modern Europe.

The Centre often calls upon the wide expertise of its associates in the University and its honorary staff members, each of whom add to the life and needs of our research and teaching community.


Rev. Dr. Warren R. BeattieRev. Dr. Warren R. Beattie is a minister and theological educator who has lived for over twenty years in East Asia. His research has been on themes in contextual theology and mission studies relating to Korean and East Asian settings; he also has an interest in the liturgical appropriation of the arts in Asia and in Scotland – especially in the area of hymnody and music in church.
Prof. Stewart J. BrownProf. Stewart J. Brown was educated at the University of Illinois, the University of Edinburgh and the University of Chicago, Stewart Brown taught at Northwestern University and the University of Georgia before being appointed to the Chair of Ecclesiastical History at the University of Edinburgh in 1987. His research interests involve the history of Western Christianity from the mid seventeenth century to the present, including the history of the institutional churches, popular religion, and historical theology.
Dr Alexander (Sandy) ForsythRev. Dr Sandy Forsyth is a parish minister in the Church of Scotland at Mayfield Salisbury, Edinburgh, and is also a Lecturer in Practical Theology and Missiology in the School of Divinity on a limited, part-time basis. He completed his PhD in 2014 on mission in contemporary Scotland, later published as Mission by the People (Pickwick, 2017). He was thereafter employed in the School of Divinity in Edinburgh as Hope Trust Postdoctoral Fellow and then T.F. Torrance Lecturer in Theology and Mission, as well as lecturing at Glasgow University. His academic interests are in practical theology, in particular missiology, church and society, training for ministry and the interactions of religion with the civil law.
Prof. Joachim GentzProf. Joachim Gentz was Juniorprofessor in Religious Studies in Göttingen and is now Chair of Chinese Philosophy and Religions at the Asian Studies Department of the University of Edinburgh with a main research focus on Chinese history of thought. He has published on early Confucian commentarial traditions, Chinese ritual and divination, Chinese inter-religious discourses, early Chinese forms of argumentation, Chinese visual traditions, modern Chinese religious policy and Cultural Studies theory in both German and English.
Dr Liz GrantDr Liz Grant is the Director of the Global Health Academy and Assistant Principal for Global Health. Liz is also a Senior Lecturer in Global Health and Development in the Usher Institute at the University of Edinburgh, and co-directs the online Masters in Family Medicine, the MSc in Global Health Non communicable diseases, and the MSc Global eHealth.
Dr Naomi HaynesDr Naomi Haynes is a social anthropologist working at the intersection of religion and political economy. Her research to date has examined Pentecostal Christianity in urban Zambia. Naomi’s research is about cultural values, religious economies, and the way that religion shapes people and social relationships.
Rev. Dr Elijah ObinnaRev. Dr Elijah Obinna is a minister of the Church of Scotland at St. John’s, Carluke, and former senior lecturer and Director of Research and Postgraduate Studies at Hugh Goldie Theological Training Institution, Arochukwu, Nigeria. He completed his PhD in 2011 at the University of Edinburgh, published as Identity Crises and Indigenous Religious Traditions: Exploring Nigerian-African Christian Societies (Routledge 2017). His research is in the history and dynamics of Christian missions and indigenous rituals in Africa and the African diaspora.
Dr Joshua RalstonDr Joshua Ralston is concerned with the theological, ethical, legal-political, and scriptural encounters between Christians and Muslims across the centuries. His research interests include Christian theological views of Islam, Arab Christianity, the Palestine-Israel Conflict, Christian-Muslim Relations in Sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia, and migration and global Christianity.
Prof. Brian StanleyProf. Brian Stanley read history at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and stayed on in Cambridge for his PhD on the place of missionary enthusiasm in Victorian religion. He has taught in theological colleges and universities in London, Bristol, and Cambridge, and joined the University of Edinburgh in January 2009. Brian has written or edited eight books and numerous articles, mostly in the field of the history of Christian missions. He has been Professor Emeritus of World Christianity since October 2023.

Honorary Staff