Dr Jagbir Jhutti-Johal BA (UCL), DPhil (Oxford)

Photograph of Dr Jagbir Jhutti-Johal

Department of Theology and Religion
Senior Lecturer in Sikh Studies

Contact details

ERI Building
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

I am a Senior Lecturer in Sikh Studies at the University of Birmingham. My research encompasses a range of related topics in Sikh Studies, such as gender and Sikhism, science and Sikhism and contemporary Sikhism.

On the teaching side, I teach Introduction to Sikhism (second-year undergraduate); Placement Module (second–year undergraduate); and an MPhil(B) course on Sikh Studies, MA in Religion Politics and Society; and I’m supervising PhD theses on Sikhs and Identity, and an Historical account of the development of the Gurdwara Act 1925.

I’m currently a Commissioner on the Commission on Religion and Belief in British Public Life: community, diversity and the common good) convened by The Woolf Institute, Cambridge (2013-15)

I am a Board member - ‘The European Society for Intercultural Theology and Interreligious Studies’.  

I was a Working Group Member on the Family Justice Council’s Domestic Violence Working Group, and an Advisory Member for the West Midlands Area Ethnic Community Engagement Board


I studied in the Department of Anthropology and History at University College London where I completed my undergraduate degree in Ancient History and Social Anthropology.  I then went to Oxford University where I completed my DPhil in Social Anthropology entitled A study of changes in marriage practices among the Sikhs of Britain.

Before coming to Birmingham in 2002, I was working at the University of Oxford has a Research Assistant on a project commisioned by the Department of Constitutional Affairs (now Ministry of Justice) looking at public law proceedings concerned with the care and protection of children focusing, in particular, on race and ethnicity in the Family Justice System.



  • Introduction to Sikhism
  • Placement Module
  • Religion in Contemporary Society


  • Sikh perspectives on interreligious relations
  • Contemporary issues in Sikh Studies
  • Research Methods
  • Religion in Contemporary Global Politics 1
  • Religion in Contemporary Global Politics 2

Programme convenor

  • MA Religion, Politics and Society
  • MA in Humanities

Postgraduate supervision

I am happy to supervise in a range of topics:

  • Sikh studies
  • Ethnic minorities, religion and law
  • South Asian diasporas
  • Gender studies
  • Religion in contemporary society


My main research area is Contemporary Sikhism. This includes:

  • Sikhs and the Law, especially with reference to the impact on identity
  • Gender Studies and Sikhism focusing on geneder inequality and issues such as female feoticide and domestic violence
  • Sikhism and Science, especially questions about scientific advances in reproductive technologies, cloning and genetic engineering, but also how the body is viewed, especially within Sikhism.

Other activities

  • College of Arts and Law Deputy Director for Postgraduate Taught
  • College of Arts and Law Site Director for Midlands3Cities DTP
  • Head of Postgraduate Taught Programmes for the School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion
  • Appointed Commissioner on the Commission on Religion and Belief in British Public Life: community, diversity and the common good) convened by The Woolf Institute, Cambridge (2013-15)
  • Board member - ‘The European Society for Intercultural Theology and Interreligious Studies’



  • Sikhism Today 2011 Continuum Press:  London

Book chapters

  • How Parties to Sikh Marriages use and are influenced by the Norms of their religion and culture when engaging with mediation.  In M MacLean and John Eeklaar Managing Family Justice in Diverse Societies. Oxford: Hart Publishing 2013. Pp. 203-219.
  • Sikhism and mental illness:  negotiating competing cultures in D. Cave and Rebecca Sachs Norris Modern Science and the Construction of Religious Meaning. Netherlands: Brill 2012.  Pp. 235-55.
  • The Role of Women in their Religious Institutions: A Contemporary Account. In Sikhism and Women: History, Texts and Experience. (ed) Doris Jakobsch. Oxford University press: India May 2010
  • What Makes a Good City: A Sikh perspective? What Makes a Good City? University of Birmingham Press. [Edited collection of papers for the Midlands Faiths for the Cityevent held in the Great Hall, University of Birmingham, Sept. 11th2007.]  pp.46-52.
  • ‘Ethnic and Cultural diversity in the Indian Subcontinent’ (with A Gumber and P.S.Gill) in Genetic Disorders among People from the Indian Subcontinent, edited by Dhavendra Kumar. Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2005
  • ‘The Sikh Grand Narrative’ (with S.S.Johal), in Palliative Care amongst South Asians, edited by A.R.Gatrad et al. Quay Books, 2005.
  • ‘Dowry among Sikhs in Britain’, in South Asians and the Dowry Problem, edited by Werner Menski. Trentham Books, 1998.


  • ‘Understanding and Coping with Diversity in Healthcare’. In Health Care Analysis 21.3 (2013): 259-270.
  • ‘Sikh Birth Customs’ (with A.R.Gatrad., P.S. Gill, and A. Sheikh), in Archives of Diseases in Childhood 2005.
  • ‘Assessing and documenting child ill-treatment in minority ethnic households’ (with Julia Brophy and C Owen) in Family Law 2003, pp 756-764.

Official reports

  • ‘Minority ethnic parents, their solicitors and child protection litigation’(with Julia Brophy and Eleanor McDonald. London: Department of Constitutional Affairs Research Series 5/05. 2005.
  • ‘Significant Harm: Child Protection in a Multicultural Setting’ (with Julia Brophy and Charlie Owen). London: Lord Chancellor's Department, 2003


  • Hosted for the Commission on Religion and Belief the National Hearing for the Youth 26thFebruary 2015
  • ESITIS conference in 2015 Lublin / Poland (April 15 - 18) Theme: Shifting Locations -Reshaping Methods - How New Fields of Research in Intercultural Theology and Interreligious Studies Elicit Methodological Extension Presented paper on :  Methodology in Lived Religion: Sikhs and Marriage