Millennials Believe Britain Is No Longer A Christian Country – But They Still Think Religion Matters
Most millennials do not view Britain as a Christian country, according to a poll to be published tomorrow.
Instead, they view Britain as a nation with no specific religious identity. But they do believe that religion plays an important role in the lives of individuals.
The survey was carried out by pollsters ComRes and is being published tomorrow to mark the launch of the new Faith Research Centre later this month.
The centre will carry out research to help politicians, policy makers, employers and others understand the role of religion in the world.
ComRes interviewed 2,048 British adults online between January 4 and 5, 2017.
Under a third of millennials, those aged 18-24, described Britain as a Christian country. And more than four in 10 of these young men and women said Britain is a country with no specific religious identity.
However, half of millennials said UK politicians and policy-makers should have a good understanding of religion, and that understanding religion "is important to tackling terrorism around the world".
"In some of the questions we asked, adults aged between 18-24 and adult aged 65+ answered at opposite ends of the scale, indicating marked differences between generations in perceptions of religion and belief," said Katie Harrison, director of the new Faith Research Centre.
"This is consistent with some of the projects we've recently been commissioned to carry out. We're seeing a strong interest in understanding the attitudes and needs of people in their 20s, especially in our faith research work."
About the new centre, Harrison, who was previously at the Christian global charity Tearfund, added: "Having worked in local communities in the UK as well as in the Middle East and sub-Saharan Africa in refugee camps, urban slums and rural villages, I'm clear that religion and belief plays a huge part in many people's lives, and to overlook it is to misunderstand important drivers of behaviour and culture.
"We don't yet have easily accessible authoritative data in the UK and Europe, and this is a gap in knowledge which we aim to fill."
Andrew Hawkins, ComRes founder and chairman, said: "We have become the first choice for clients seeking to research attitudes, perceptions and behaviour relating to religion and belief and already have a strong client base within academic, media, commercial, faith and public sectors. Demand has increased and we are very well placed to create a centre of excellence in this area. We believe that this is the UK's first dedicated commercial capability with specific expertise in researching religion and belief."