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Thomas Renkert, Heidelberg

Profile Sheet | "Permanently Normative?"-Project

Published onOct 04, 2022
Thomas Renkert, Heidelberg
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1 | Formal Information

Thomas Renkert, Dr. theol., Heidelberg School of Education (joint institution of the University of Heidelberg and the Heidelberg University of Education)
Institutional website

2 | Our project aims to reflect on values in school, pastoral care and other care contexts. What academic perspective do I bring to the project with regard to this focus?

I am the scientific coordinator for different research and transfer cluster projects at HSE. Prior to this position, I was an assistant professor at the institute for the study of Diaconia in Heidelberg. I am familiar with many different care context, and the discourse on values from a sociological, philosophical, and theological perspectives. Personally, I am most interested in tacit knowledge and implicit convictions, to which - on an individual level - the concept of values might belong.

First of all, I hope for an interesting exchange. I believe it is important to take more “action first”[1] approaches to theory seriously. The different contexts of practice - school education, counselling, carework - will enable us to not reduce practice to the application of theory, but to view it as theory-generating in its own right.

Secondly, I look forward to a potential new framework on how to think about the concept of values in general, and its “transferability” specifically. I would like to see as one practical and applicable result the emergence of some (interactive) material usable in the training of teachers, care workers, and counsellors.

Third, I hope to get new insights for my post-doctoral project on “care between mourning and blessing”, which attempts to do a fundamental reconstruction of the practice of Diaconia as a generator for theological reflection.

4 | Further notes

I think the success of the project depends on the commitments and investments of smaller or larger work groups over the next year. The project has huge potential, and could lead to a established and sustainable network of cooperation for years to come. Which would be great to have.

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