Dr Jasjit Singh

Dr Jasjit Singh


I am based at the University of Leeds where I am employed as an Associate Professor in the School of Philosophy, Religion and the History of Science (PRHS). My research focuses on the religious and cultural lives of South Asians in Britain, with a particular focus on ‘Religious and Cultural transmission’ and on the representation of religious minorities.

I completed my PhD (recognised for research excellence) in 2012 in the department of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Leeds where my research was supervised by Prof. Kim Knott and Dr Sean McLoughlin. My PhD was funded through a Collaborative Studentship as part of the AHRC/ESRC Religion and Society programme in conjunction with the British Educational and Cultural Association of Sikhs (BECAS), an organisation formed 25 years ago to oversee the educational interests of Sikh children and young people.

Since completing my doctorate in 2012 I have actively sought to enhance my profile not only as a leading researcher and educator, but also as an engaged academic and member of the PRHS team at Leeds. As my profile in academia has grown I have held a number of internal and external posts, and have taken a leading role in local, national and international initiatives.

I am increasingly regarded as an innovator in impact related work, evidenced by my invitation by UKRI to speak to research council staff about engagement with minority ethnic communities and organisations (Jan 2018) and by my invitation as tutor at the 2016 ‘Research Methods for The Study Of Religion’ Course, University of Kent where I presented a workshop on ‘Public engagement and research on religion’ to a group of ten doctoral students (March 2016).

I have also contributed to the organisation of a number of conferences including as Program Chair for the largest sociology of religion conference in Europe, the International Society for the Sociology of Religion (ISSR) conference in Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium (2015) with over 500 delegates. I also co-organised the annual BSA Sociology of Religion Study Group (SOCREL) conference at the University of Leeds (2017) and am on the organising committee of the annual International Sikh Research Conference which takes place at the University of Warwick.

In 2023 I was appointed as the inaugural Visiting Professor in Sikh Studies at the National University of Singapore. 


  • Pro Dean International, Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures

Research interests

My research focuses on processes of religious and cultural transmission in the lives of British South Asians, in particular British Sikhs. To what extent are they influenced by migration, ethnicity and minority status?  And, situated as they are in western modernity, how far do British South Asians experience a ‘turn to the self’ and manage individual authority whilst also sustaining membership of a religious community?

I am currently examining the impact of the digital work on the Sikh tradition. How does Sikh interaction with digital media impact religious authority, community dynamics, and identity formation and how does this influence contemporary Sikh belief and practice? 

I have established a strong publication profile in religious studies and diaspora studies through articles in field-leading journals and have also published book chapters in high quality monographs. Building on these publications and following a successful funding awards I have implemented innovative research and impact activities and to develop my engagement skills with a variety of different audiences including media organisations, policy makers and the Sikh community.  

Having developed a national and international profile as a ‘specialist’ on Sikhs in diaspora, my expertise has also been called on by statutory bodies, most recently by legal firms dealing with asylum cases relating to Afghan Sikhs (January 2018–Present). Indeed, through this consultancy I identified that the ‘Country Policy and Information Note, Afghanistan: Hindus and Sikhs’ (Feb 2017) published by the Home Office included inaccurate information on the languages spoken by Afghan Sikhs. Having raised this issue with the Home Office through my participation in the MHCLG ‘Sikh Roundtable’, my work has been included in this guidance which has now been corrected (July 2018). By influencing policy in this way and through my public engagement and impact activities, I am committed to demonstrating the value of and raising the profile of Arts and Humanities research among groups who may not have previously engaged with these disciplines previously.

Details about my teaching, research, media appearances and grants are available on my website.

PhD Supervisions

I welcome applications for PhD Supervision in the areas of:

  • Religion in Diaspora
  • Religion and Media
  • Digital Religion
  • Sikh Studies
  • Religion and Culture 
  • Religious Transmission
  • Religion and Policy
  • Religion and extremism / radicalization
<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD (Recognised for Research excellence)
  • MA Religion and Public Life (Distinction)
  • BSc (Hons) Computer Science & Accounting

Professional memberships

  • AAR Sikh Studies Unit Co-Chair

Student education

Level 3: Religion and Media

  • Typical class size: 40 (Lecture), 15 (Seminar)
  • Role: Module leader
  • Responsibilities: design and deliver module (lectures and seminars), marking, module review

Level 2: Human Rights and Religion

  • Typical class size: 25 (Lecture), 15 (Seminar)
  • Role: Tutor
  • Responsibilities: design and deliver lecture and seminar on ‘Human Rights, Religion and Nationalism in India’

Level 1: Religion in Modern Britain

  • Typical class size: 35 (Lecture), 15 (Seminar)
  • Role: Module leader
  • Responsibilities: design and deliver module (lectures and seminars), marking, module review

Summary of student feedback: 96%+ agree or strongly agree on all indicators

Evidence of success. Student feedback included:

  • “Lectures - really interesting content, makes you think, teaches you things you didn’t know anything about before, broad range of topics and information”
  • “I really enjoyed the freedom of collecting and reporting on the information first hand. Seeing the religion in practice as opposed to just reading theory was really interested.”
  • “Enjoyed the opportunity to visit a place of worship the module gives and the insight into many traditions we may not have otherwise studied.”

Level 1: Introduction to the Study of Religion

  • Typical class size: 85 (Lecture), 15 (Seminar)
  • Role: Module leader
  • Responsibilities: design and deliver module (lectures and seminars), marking, module review

Summary of student feedback: 96%+ agree or strongly agree on all indicators

Evidence of success. Student feedback included:

  • “This module was probably my favourite module as the content was of a very high standard and the delivery of each lecture was given with a lot of enthusiasm causing me to be more engaged with the module
  • “Very good module, thoroughly enjoyed the content, the lectures and the set reading. Teaching was of a very high standard and taught with enthusiasm. Assessment was explained well and plenty of opportunities to discuss this with Jas. Feedback on report plans were of a good level and I look forward to writing it.”
  • “Great tutor. Very enthusiastic and open to all sorts of questions and ideas that didn't leave you going away from the seminar confused or regretting you had asked a question. Also very knowledgeable and able to contribute a great deal to our studies.”

Level 3: Religion and Violence

  • Typical class size: 20
  • Role: Tutor
  • Responsibilities: design and deliver lecture and seminar on ‘Religion and Radicalisation’, marking

Level 3: External Placement: Beyond the University

  • Supervisor: supervising two placement students working with 1) Leeds City Council and 2) Leeds City Museum; marking and commenting on reflective logs and project report.
  • Supervisor: supervising a placement student working with South Asian Arts UK; marking and commenting on reflective logs and project report.

Level 3: Independent Research Project

  • Supervisor: supervising and marking final year projects.

Level 1: Introduction to South Asian Religions

Typical class size: 20 (Lecture), 10 (Seminar)

  • Role: Tutor
  • Responsibilities: design and deliver lectures and seminars on ‘The Sikh tradition’, marking

Level 2: The Sikh Tradition

  • Typical class size: 20 (Lecture), 10 (Seminar)
  • Role: Module leader
  • Responsibilities: design and deliver module (lectures and seminars), marking, module review

Summary of student feedback: 100% agree or strongly agree on all indicators. Evidence of success. Student feedback included:

  • “This module has been by far the best one I have done this year. Jas has been incredibly enthusiastic about the module which has meant we have all really enjoyed it. The lectures and seminars have been very clear and have all connected. Jas has been the best lecturer and seminar tutor I have had, his interest and excitement for his topic has really rubbed off on us meaning the module has been extremely enjoyable!”
  • “Overall, this module has been an absolute pleasure to take. I have enjoyed every part of it and the module leader has been an inspirational and motivational person throughout the semester. I really would recommend this module/and other modules taught by this module leader, to anyone in first year/second year. Really great”
  • “What a brilliant module! I have enjoyed every second of ‘The Sikh Tradition’ and I am so glad I chose it. Jas is a brilliant lecturer and seminar leader, provoking interesting debates and conversations amongst the group. We have had amazing opportunities through this module such as a Sikh music concert and getting to visit three Gurdwaras. This is the sort of module I would expect to have access to whilst at University, as it has really opened my eyes to a new tradition and had plenty to offer. I really hope I can work with Jas again in the future. Amazing.”


Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Religion and Public Life
  • Theology and Religious Studies

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>