Publications from the National Congregations Study range from general overviews to writings about specific topics, and are geared for academic, clergy, and lay audiences. On this page we highlight some key reports, articles, and books, with links to the full text as available. A more comprehensive list of publications is also available. If copyright restrictions prevent your download of an article for which Mark Chaves is one of the authors, please contact us with your request and we will send a copy to you.
Also, if you have used NCS data to write something, or if you know of something that has been written using NCS data, please let us know so we can add it to the list of study writings.
Following Wave IV: Congregations in 21st Century America. By Mark Chaves, Joseph Roso, Anna Holleman, and Mary Hawkins. 2021. Durham, NC: Department of Sociology, Duke University.
Following Wave III: Religious Congregations in 21st Century America. By Mark Chaves and Alison Eagle. November 2015. Durham, NC: Department of Sociology, Duke University.
Following Wave II: American Congregations at the Beginning of the 21st Century. By Mark Chaves, Shawna Anderson, and Jason Byassee. June 2009. Durham, NC: Department of Sociology, Duke University.
Articles Introducing Each Wave of the NCS
Wave IV Symposium:
Chaves, Mark, Mary Hawkins, Anna Holleman, and Joseph Roso. 2020. “Introducing the Fourth Wave of the National Congregations Study.” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 59(4): 646-650.
Beyerlein, Kraig and Mark Chaves. 2020. “The Political Mobilization of America’s Congregations.” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 59(4): 663-674.
Dougherty, Kevin D., Mark Chaves, and Michael O. Emerson. 2020. “Racial Diversity in U.S. Congregations, 1998-2019.” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 59(4): 651-662.
Roso, Joseph, Anna Holleman, and Mark Chaves. 2020. “Changing Worship Practices in American Congregations.” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 59(4): 675-684.
Wave III: Chaves, Mark, and Shawna Anderson. 2014. "Changing American Congregations: Findings from the Third Wave of the National Congregations Study." Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 53(4):676-86.
Wave II: Chaves, Mark, and Shawna Anderson. 2008. "Continuity and Change in American Congregations: Introducing the Second Wave of the National Congregations Study." Sociology of Religion 69(4):415–40.
Wave I: Chaves, Mark, Mary Ellen Konieczny, Kraig Beyerlein, and Emily Barman. 1999. "The National Congregations Study: Background, Methods, and Selected Results." Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 38(4):458–76.
Books on U.S. Congregations and Religion Using the NCS
Chaves, Mark. 2017. American Religion: Contemporary Trends (2nd edition). Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
2012 Book Award in Christianity and Culture, Christianity Today (for the first edition)
Chaves, Mark. 2004. Congregations in America. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
2006 Distinguished Book Award, American Sociological Association, Sociology of Religion Section
2006 Outstanding Book Award, Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action
Download a more comprehensive list of NCS writings.
- More than 5,300 participating congregations representing 80+ Christian denominations, plus Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, and other religious groups.
- Information on demographics, leadership, worship life, community engagement, and much more.
- Contains data tables, graphs, and detailed analysis.