Founder & Director

Dr Felix Wilfred is the Founder-Director of the Asian Centre for Cross-Cultural Studies.

Prof. Dr. Felix Wilfred is a former Professor of the State University of Madras, India. Currently he is the Director of the Asian Centre for Cross-Cultural Studies, Chennai. From his teens, he was educated in Italy and France.  As a studet, he was recipient of three gold medals for academic performance. Until retirement, he was Dean of the Faculty of Arts, and Chairman of the School of Philosophy and Religious Thought, University of Madras, India.He has served also as a member of the Statutory Ethical Committee of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Chennai. Dr. Wilfred served as the President of the International Theological Review Concilium. He has been a member of the Vatican International Theological Commission with Cardinal Ratzinger as Chairman.  For about ten years, he served also as secretary of the Office of Theological Concerns of FABC. Dr Wilfred was also the President of the Indian Theological Association. 

He was visiting professor in several International Universities, including the University of Frankfurt, University of Munster, University of Nijmegen, Boston College, East Asian Pastoral Institute, Manila, and Fudan University, China. As ICCR Professor he held the Chair of Indian Studies at Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland. He is scheduled to give the prestigious Duffy Lectures at Boston College early 2023. 

Dr Wilfred has numerous books and articles to his credit. Among others, he edited The Oxford Handbook of Asian Christianity (2014). His most recent work: Religious Identities and the Global South. Porous Borders and Novel Paths (2021) was published by Palgrave Macmillan. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Asian Christianity, a peer-reviewed journal published by Brill, The Netherlands, and indexed in SCOPUS and in its data base. 

Deputy Director 

Fr. Dr. James Ponniah is a scholar of religious studies and works as Head of the Department of Christian Studies in the School of Philosophy and Religious Thought at the University of Madras, Chennai. He was formerly the dean of the Faculty of Philosophy at Jnana Deepa Vidyapeeth, Pontifical Institute of Philosophy and Religion, Pune.  He holds membership in various scholarly associations such as EASAS (European Association for South Asian Studies), AAR (American Academy of Religions), SHCS (Society for Hindu Christian Studies, USA) and AAS (Association of Asian Studies, USA) and ACPI (Association of Christian Philosophers of India) and has presented scholarly papers in their annual conferences. In addition to many research articles and book chapters in this discipline [ international  (30) and  national (40)];  he has authored a monograph The Dynamics of Folk Religion in Society: Pericentralisation as Deconstruction of Sanskritisation (2011), edited Religion, Culture and Home-making: In and Beyond South Asia (2020) and co-edited Dancing Peacock: Indian Insight into Religion and Redevelopment (2010), Committed to the Church and the Country (2013) and Identity, Difference and Conflict: Postcolonial Critique (2013). He was in the editorial board of Jnana Deepa: Pune Journal of Philosophy and Religion (2009-2014) and currently works as the co-editor Indian Journal of Christian Studies, Chennai and Book Review editor of Brill’s International Journal of Asian Christianity. He was a co-investigator with Chad Bauman (Butler University, USA) for the Project onChristianity, Religious Freedom, and Religious Violence in Contemporary India’ funded by Berkeley Centre for Religion, Peace and World Affairs, Washington. He was awarded Collaborative International Research Grant by American Academy of Religions in 2015 and best researcher award by University of Madras in 2018. 

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