Joseph Laycock was a student at Harvard Divinity School when he began researching the religious diversity of Austin, TX. While the majority of immigrants to the U.S. arrive at gateway cities on the nation’s coasts, immigrants with education and resources are often drawn to “idea cities” that offer employment in software design and management consulting.
From 1990-2000, Austin added 85,907 foreign born people to its population, increasing the previous population by 56 percent. Business analysts indicate that Austin’s immigrant population has been a great boom to the city’s renowned tech industry. The culture of Austin has also been affected by this migration, and the last decade has seen the rise of many large temples and mosques as well as a flowering of interfaith dialogue and projects.
The centerpiece of this project was a report and collection of profiles on some of the city’s religious centers both old and new. Research was conducted with an eye towards some of the historical, economic, cultural, and political forces that have shaped the city and its religious landscape.
Selected Links and Publications
- Research Report: Religious Diversity in Austin, TX: Come for the Economy, Stay for the Attitude (2003)
- Center Profiles
- A Community for Contemplative Practice (2003)
- Chua Linh-Son (2003)
- Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Association (2006)
- Islamic Center of Greater Austin (2006)
- JKP Radha Madhav Dham Temple (1993)
- Phoenix Moon Coven (2004)
- Plum Blossom Sangha (2006)
- Singh Sabha Gurdwara (2003)
- Sitagu Buddhist Vihara (2003)
- Soka Gakkai International – Austin Chapter (2003)
- Wat Buddhananachat of Austin (2003)
- Xiang Yun Temple, International Buddhist Progress Society at Austin (2003)