The Cemetery Research Group aims to expand an understanding of current and past funeral culture in the UK and around the world

Three men in front of a wall of niches
Cemetery in Santiago, Chile (photo by I. Amenbar, unsplash)

Every culture must devise ways of attending to mortal remains. The Cemetery Research Group (CRG) takes an interdisciplinary approach in researching how emotional, religious and social concerns have been framed by economic and political imperatives.

Across the world, traditional practices have been gradually overtaken by the need to operate at scale, as populations move from rural to urban settlements. Dealing with the dead has become the purview of professional managers, planners and technological innovators. 

The highly charged significance of mortal remains means that societal responses to the dead can become points of coercion and conflict, celebrating or supressing identity. 

Scholars from around the globe are engaged in cemetery studies, broadly defined, and there is a substantial and growing bibliography.


The Virtual Colloquium will be taking place this year on 27th November. 

This entirely on-line event is an opportunity for colleagues from around the globe to present new and emerging findings. Papers are particularly welcome from early career scholars.

Deadline for abstracts: 29th September.

Two tightly-packed rows of headstones for cremated remains
Ripon Cemetery, 2013 (CRG Collection)

Frequently Asked Questions

How many cemeteries are there in the UK? How many people are cremated? What’s direct cremation all about, and what’s green burial? We have answers to frequently asked questions about funeral practices in the UK.