Ninna Edgardh

Prof. Dr. Ninna Edgardh is professor of ecclesiology, especially social and diaconal studies, at the Faculty of Theology, Uppsala University. Her international publications include articles on liturgy, ecclesiology and studies on Christian social practice, welfare and gender. She has been part of the editorial committee of Diaconia – journal for the study of Christian Social Practice since its founding and was elected chair of the executive board of ReDi at the annual meeting in Helsinki Finland in 2016.

Isto Peltomäki
Vice-Chair & Contact Person to the Finnish Authorities

Isto Peltomäki is a doctoral student at the University of Helsinki (UH). He studies pastoral care as a common task within the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland (ELCF). He teaches or has taught at the Faculty of Theology at UH the subjects as theology and practice of pastoral, history of theology of pastoral care, Christian and philosophical idea of man, and philosophy and theology of reciprocity and gift. Mr. Peltomäki is a pastor of ELCF since Jan 2015.

Eurodiaconia - Vera Nygård
Treasurer & Institutional Board Member

Eurodiaconia is a European network of churches and Christian NGOs providing social and health care services and advocating social justice. Its membership represents the needs and unique experiences of 51 national and regional organisations in 32 countries. Eurodiaconia hosts the office of ReDi. This means that Eurodiaconia collects and administrates the membership fees and coordinates the newsletter and the website.

Vera Nygård is the ReDi contact person at Eurodiaconia. Vera is a Policy, Projects & Research Officer at Eurodiaconia in Brussels. Since 2020 she works among other topics on Eurodiaconia’s research agenda, EU-funding policies, European social policy, and international project development. Vera holds a research degree (Lic.Phil.) in Ethnology from Åbo Akademi University in Finland. After having worked as a researcher in social history projects for a few years, she relocated to Sydney, Australia to study pastoral leadership and work in social outreach projects. In Brussels she has also worked for the information service of the European Commission and the Salvation Army EU Affairs Office.

VID Specialized University – Stephen Sirris
Secretary & Institutional Board Member

VID Specialized University in Norway was established as a result of a merger of four diaconal and church-based university colleges in January 1, 2016. These were: Diakonhjemmet University College, Haraldsplass Deaconess University College, Betanien University College and School of Mission and Theology merged and became VID Specialized University. VID offers bachelor and master programs in the fields of health, social work, social pedagogy, diaconia, theology, value-based leadership, family therapy and intercultural competence in Bergen, Oslo and Stavanger/Sandnes. It has to PhD programs, one in theology and religion and one in diakonia, values and professional practice.

Stephen Sirris is PhD-student working on a comparative project on management in religious and diaconal organizations. He has studied theology, music and pedagogics and also holds a master`s degree in management. Prior to his current academic post, he has worked in congregations as a pastor and musician.

John Klaasen
Internationalisation & Website

Dr. John Klaasen works as Head of Department at the University of The Western Cape at the Faculty of Arts, Department of Religion and Theology and teaches practical theology. His research interests include: The role of personhood in development and Religion and social justice. International publications cover topics like Identity and Migration, Identity and Race, Development and Theology.

Institut für Diakoniewissenschaft und DiakonieManagement (IDM) - Dennis Solon
Institutional Board Member

The Institute for Diaconic Science and Management (IDM) is part of the Protestant University Wuppertal / Bethel and runs a Masters program in Diaconic Management in English and in German and a PhD program that leads to a Dr. Diac. The IDM is placed on the site of one of the largest and most well known social service agencies in Europe, the “von Bodelschwingh foundation Bethel”. The focus of the institute is leadership in social service agencies.

Dr. Dennis Solon (Dr. theol., Heidelberg) is visiting professor for biblical studies (New Testament) at the Institute for Diaconic Science and Diaconic Management (IDM) of the Protestant University Wuppertal/Bethel. An ordained minister of the United Church of Christ in the Philippines, he is presently interested in investigating the ethical and socio-political aspects of the New Testament texts and their relationship to the early Christian social practice.

Herman Noordegraaf
Board Member & Reports from Practice

Herman Noordegraaf is extra-ordinary professor for diaconia at the Protestant Theological University that is connected with the Protestant Church in the Netherlands. The university is located in Amsterdam and Groningen. He is especially involved in research on poverty and care. He is member of the editorial team of Diaconia. Journal for the Study of Christian Social Study.