Program Type

40 ICH | 60 ECTS


EUCLID School of Theology and Interfaith Studies

Study Mode

Online / Distance
Part Time or Full Time

Online PhD in Interfaith Research and Diplomacy (DIRD)

Interfaith research and diplomacy is an important and new emerging field of research, notably in view of ongoing inter-religious conflict, mass migrations, and grave issues related to radicalization. In order to address this need at the highest level of academic rigor, EUCLID offers an online PhD in Interfaith Research and Diplomacy which offers a combination of interfaith studies (theology) and international affairs.

Applicants should appreciate that EUCLID is in a unique position to offer the world’s leading online doctorate in interfaith studies:

  • as an intergovernmental university with a specific mandate in inter-religious dialogue
  • as the winner of the UN World Interfaith Harmony Week Prize

The DIRD is an academically balanced non resident doctoral program delivered by a treaty-based and treaty-practicing institution with an explicit mandate in inter-religious diplomacy.

online phd in interfaith studies

Note: the DIRD (PhD in Inter-religious Dialogue and Diplomacy) was renamed PhD in Interfaith Research and Diplomacy in 2016 but the code DIRD remains the same.

Academic Presentation

EUCLID’s specialized PhD degree focuses on interfaith practice and the actual application of interfaith skills in the community, rather than the advancement of academic knowledge for its own sake. Our program places a special emphasis on contemporary Islam, Muslim-Christian dialogue, modern secularism, as well as de-radicalization and mediation.

Within certain parameters, the roadmap of the doctoral program is customizable, with elective courses focusing on:

  • Specific world religions
  • Inter-cultural issues
  • Mediation and conflict resolution
  • Inter-ethnic and inter-religious relations
  • Radicalization and de-radicalization
  • “A Common Word” and Muslim -Christian relations

Interfaith Visibility in Action

EUCLID is very active and widely recognized for its leadership in interfaith studies. In 2016, EUCLID was awarded the First Prize of the UN World Interfaith Harmony Week from the hands of H.M. King Abdullah of Jordan. EUCLID maintains a dedicated web site at


Photo above: The  award ceremony held at the Royal Palace in Amman, Jordan (2016). Below: EUCLID’s Pr Laurent Cleenewerck was honored with the responsibility of delivering the opening speech in front of the distinguished audience.

cleenewerck speech amman

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Admissions / Entry Requirements for the MTh

Applicants should have a relevant Master’s degree issued by an institution listed in the UNESCO-IAU handbook / database. Similar or related backgrounds with adequate professional experience may be considered

Government-sponsored applicants (who are already government staff) may be admitted without the required educational credential if their level of education and experience is deemed sufficient. EUCLID may require these participants to complete bridge courses prior to enrolling in the program.

Fluency in English (spoken and written) is required and will be tested.

Students are expected to be in position to dedicate 10 to 15 effective hours of study on a weekly basis.

Tuition and Fees

Employment Outlook

This program provides outstanding academic preparation to its students for further studies at the doctoral level as well as for government or academic service. Interfaith graduates are in demand all over the world, both at the local (community engagement) and global levels (government and intergovernmental agencies). Interfaith experts are rare and we except the employment outlook to remain very positive in the long term.

Faculty Highlights

EUCLID’s degree programs are supported by a world-class faculty group which is truly global in scope and dedicated to high-quality interaction with each student. For each program, 3 faculty members are featured below, and the full faculty roster is accessible via the top menu.

Pr Laurent Cleenewerck

Professor of Theology and International Administration

Pr Jose Kuruchavira

Professor of Theology

Pr Muhammed Al-Hashimi

Adjunct Professor


Download Brochure

The full DIRD Brochure can be downloaded in PDF format.

Why study at EUCLID?

EUCLID is the only intergovernmental, treaty-based university with a UN registered charter and recognized expertise in diplomacy. Join the alma mater of ambassadors and senior officials globally.

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