Iran’s secular shift: New survey reveals huge changes in religious beliefs

Ammar Maleki, Pooyan Tamimi Arab

Research output: Online publication or Non-textual formWeb publication/sitePopular


Iran’s 1979 Islamic revolution was a defining event that changed how we think about the relationship between religion and modernity. Ayatollah Khomeini’s mass mobilisation of Islam showed that modernisation by no means implies a linear process of religious decline.

Reliable large-scale data on Iranians’ post-revolutionary religious beliefs, however, has always been lacking. Over the years, research and waves of protests and crackdowns indicated massive disappointment among Iranians with their political system. This steadily turned into a deeply felt disillusionment with institutional religion.

In June 2020, our research institute, the Group for Analyzing and Measuring Attitudes in IRAN (GAMAAN), conducted an online survey with the collaboration of Ladan Boroumand, co-founder of the Abdorrahman Boroumand Center for Human Rights in Iran.
Original languageEnglish
Place of Publication
PublisherThe Conversation UK
Media of outputOnline
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sept 2020


  • Secularization
  • Iran
  • Public attitudes
  • Survey


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