ReligionandNature: Establishing a Subfield Online

The International Society for the Study of Religion Nature and Culture (ISSRNC) was approaching its second conference with its website having been left in a state of disarray by a previous volunteer, this on top of an idiosyncratic CSS build by the original developer. Initially brought on board to update ISSRNC’s announcements and news, I discovered issues with the user experience and inconsistencies within the secondary navigation across the site.

Before: March 2007

ISSRNC Before Test 3

Left: Encyclopedia landing page, Right: Society landing page – March 2007

Assessment and Redesign

Working with founder Bron Taylor, I accounted for the inconsistencies in the navigation and content within religionandnature.com, a site that housed not only the ISSRNC but also the Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature, and the Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture. A redesign of the site was out of budget for the organization, founded only a year earlier. After accounting for all versions of the secondary navigation and the content on the site, I redesigned the information architecture and navigation, rendered the user experience across channels consistent, developed wire-frames, rewrote copy across the site, and developed the content plan. Working out of Nashville, I supervised the developer/graphic designer working out of San Francisco to correct the graphic design within the existing page structure and QA’d the site during the build out of templates and then prior to launch.

 

After: December 2007

ISSRNC After Test 1

Left: Encyclopedia landing page, Right: Society landing page – December 2007

The redesign launched in time to process registrations and provide critical information for participants for the ISSRNC’s second conference in Morelia, Mexico.

 

The 2009 Recode and Content Update

I supervised the recoding of the site in 2009 to correct for the original idiosyncratic CSS build. The recoding ensured continued cross-browser compatibility and updated the site’s content in time for the site to be used to support its third conference, in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

ISSRNC 2009 Conference Test 1

ReligionandNature.com/Society/Conferences – June 2009

 

Designed to scale over time in 2007, ReligionandNature.com was the ISSRNC’s online presence until 2017, serving the organization through seven conferences providing consistency across independent and co-branded conferences for its members, researchers who hail from six continents. ReligionandNature.com remains the home of the Journal for the Study of Religion,Nature, and Culture and the Encyclopedia.