Tuesday, Jan 20, 2015, 7 PM

Jingyang Yu

Research Fellow, Max-Planck-Institut zur Erforschung multireligiöser und multiethnischer Gesellschaften, Göttingen; Albert Einstein-Fellow, Caputh

“What if you die early?” – Religion and Life-Insurance Business in China

Gesprächsleitung: Dr. Martin Lutz, Potsdam

Religion and life-insurance has a history of tension. Back in the nineteenth century when life-insurance industry was booming in the US, debates started in Jewish communities, whether those life-insured members were still welcomed in synagogues, as they seemed to lack faith in God. In Islamic teaching, it is prohibited to trade uncertainty. Life insurance business has been controversial and underdeveloped in most countries with Islamic background till today.
Life-insurance business has encountered severe challenges in China as well. Sales agents found out that Chinese customers are not willing to talk about death, particularly not about premature death. Where does this reluctance come from? How do different insurance companies cope with it? And to what extent does cultural resistance shape the Chinese market? This talk will discuss the role of religion in the life-insurance business in China and the importance of cultural heterogeneity in the age of globalization.

Jingyang Yu joined the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversityas as a doctoral research fellow in November 2013. She received her B.A. in German language and literature studies from the Communication University of China in Beijing in 2009. She has been living in Berlin since October 2010, and received her M.A. in religious studies from Humboldt University in 2013. Her doctoral research focuses on Chinese Christian communities in Berlin, and the interaction between migrants’ churches and urban culture.

Martin Lutz ist wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter am Lehrstuhl für Sozial- und Wirtschaftsgeschichte an der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.

The event will be held in English

Eine Gemeinschaftsveranstaltung mit der Daimler und Benz Stiftung, Ladenburg