Clal Faculty

Michael Gottsegen, Ph.D.

Scholar, teacher, organizer, and writer, Michael Gottsegen, Ph. D. is a respected thinker and leader in the field of international interfaith education. An expert in political science and religion, he is a Senior Associate at Clal–The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership, a think tank, leadership training institute, and resource center. Dr. Gottsegen is also a Visiting Assistant Professor of Judaic Studies at Brown University.

A proponent of interfaith dialogue, Dr. Gottsegen works with many communities on the role of religion in an era of globalization. In 2004, he developed programming for the Parliament of the World’s Religions’ conference in Barcelona, the pre–eminent interfaith forum, where he also served as a speaker and moderator. In 2005, he helped galvanize religious leaders to support the adoption of the United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals, which seeks to cut global poverty in half by 2015, and is organizing a conference at the Church Center of the United Nations for June 2005.

Dr. Gottsegen is a co–founder and Executive Committee member of the Consultation on Interfaith Education (CIE), an advisory group with links to the Parliament of the World’s Religions and the United Nations. CIE represents the world’s major religions, and seeks to promote and map the field of interfaith education globally. Clal has been a member of CIE since 2003.

A highly regarded teacher long interested in religion in the public square, Dr. Gottsegen developed a curriculum on Judaism and Islam in the modern world, and teaches on religion and public policy, and on Jewish ethics, politics and religion.  He has taught political philosophy at Columbia University, and Jewish philosophy at Brandeis University. 

Known as a thoughtful speaker, writer, and editor, Dr. Gottsegen has presented papers at such prestigious institutes as the American Academy of Religion and the Association for Jewish Studies, among others.  As founding editor of eCLAL: An Online Journal of Religion, Public Life and Culture, he directed all of CLAL’s Internet programs and its award-winning website, 

Dr. Gottsegen holds a Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University, and is currently at work on a Ph. D. in theology from Harvard University.  He is the author of The Political Thought of Hannah Arendt (State University of New York Press, 1993), and contributed a chapter to Religion as a Public Good: Jews and Other Americans on Religion in the Public Square, edited by Alan Mittleman (Rowman and Littlefield, 2003).  He has also written numerous articles for Jewish, religious, and secular publications.



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