A Few Great Biologists at BioLogos

Who are the handful of legitimate scientists who are actually doing science? Not retired and don’t count educators at non-secular institutions. This is the main problem Biologos has. It doesn’t have a lot of real scientists working in science expanding knowledge in a scientific field. Other than Francis Collins who certainly is leading real science at NIH, who else speaks on science at Biologos. Certainly not astronomy/Sunday school teacher Haarsma.

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I used to be one of them, right? Not any more, but I was there for a while.

Praveen Sethupathy is the real deal. He is a tenured professor at Cornell, a cancer biologist, who was a post doc under Francis Collins. I have an immense amount of respect for him as a scientist.

Jeff Hardin is chair of zoology at U Wisc, and also a well respected and accomplished scientist, and is chairman of the BioLogos board. He, also, is the real deal. https://integrativebiology.wisc.edu/staff/hardin-jeff/

@sygarte is a big deal, with an H-index greater than 50, and over 200 peer review publications, https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=2DyeqF8AAAAJ&hl=en

Jennifer Wiseman is on their board, and leader of the Hubble Program, though not a biologist.

Ard Louis is an active scientist, though in physics, not biology, and he is in Europe. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ard_Louis

There are probably a couple more. I’m sure I do not have the comprehensive list. As I said, it is a “handful”, and perhaps only 3 or 4 accomplished biologists. Ironically, none of us have any real say at BioLogos. Collins and Sethupathy are less engaged with BioLogos policy that even I am. When I was in BioLogos’s good graces, I was not once consulted on scientific question. When conflict arose, they trusted Dennis Venema over me, and still do.

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That is not true. Factually speaking, JTF is very anti-ID.

The only case I know of was a sub-grant made without their approval from a larger parent grant that they awarded. They did not have control or knowledge of the sub-granting decision, as I understand it.

There is an interesting legitimate science effort I know that they are about to fund, @Patrick. It will be their largest grant ever. You are going to love it. It may change your view of them. It is currently confidential, so I can’t say anything further. Just watch the news on this one. You are going to like this.

And to be clear, I get no funding from Templeton for my research (see Who Sponsors Peaceful Science?), and am not part of JTF in any way. I just happened onto this information in a conversation who is “in the know.”

Interesting, as some Templeton money somehow does flows to ID. Sub-granting is where grant transparency ends and is where tracking the money flow is important. A lot of strange bed-fellows happening. For example - the Catholic Knights of Columbus. Would you think that they are the primary backer of National Organization for Marriage - a anti-LGBT hate group? Also the primary funder against Planned Parenthood. Catholic Church can’t do this directly so they do it via the Knights of Columbus. And most of the old Catholic guys who are members don’t even know it.

To be clear, I am not anti-Templeton. They fund legitimate science. And what they fund in the religion/science area is also worthwhile - like Pew Research.

Regarding Biologos, I hope everyone realizes that Biologos exists because of Templeton grants. No grants, no Biologos. Biologos sticks to a very narrow playing field. A very narrow target group. And it is certainly not interested in the young “nones”. Or solving any social problems.

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Yes, I agree that those you mentioned above. But all of these pretty much stay above the operational end of things. Very much like Collins does. If you ever go back to Biologos, it should be on the Board level, not operational level at all.

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@Patrick

This is the Atheist coming out in you. Befriending and reassuring the Evangelical community is not something best assigned to Scientists, per se.

The BioLogos team must, firstly and most foremost, be dependable Christian of various denominations … in order to keep the organization’s policies alive to the idea of a Big Tent.

Actively working Christian Scientists would be ideal… but not having them is not the crucial flaw you think it is… it may well be to the long-term advantage of the movement.

@Patrick

Does your contempt for anything connected to BioLogos know no bounds?

Templeton is certainly* interested in social problems.

Templeton is but Biologos isn’t and Biologos will never go near any social issue. They are wimps with regard to today’s social issues. Not wanting to even discuss any. They just want to stay in their Evangelical Christian “origins” bubble thinking that the whole world really cares if their beliefs can be merged with the reality of the world we actually live it.

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For the record, I agree with @Patrick. The conversation has suffered from ex-scientists trying to become celebrities, and actors playing scientists TV. We need more legitimate scientists to engage the public, that hold themselves to the high standards of the scientific work in engaging the public.

Here is an example of the problem. Who do you know in the science-theology conversation that has publicly acknowledged a mistake and retracted it? It appears that I am the only person who does this on a regular basis. Only a tiny few have ever retracted a misstatement or error. Why is that? It is because there are very few legitimate scientists in the conversation.

Equal with that mission should be giving an honest and accurate account of science.

It is the most consequential problem in the conversation right now. It is critical.

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@Patrick

Agreed. And rightly so.

My apologies if your reference to “it” was BioLogos and not Templeton. I did not anticipate that the “it” was in reference to BioLogos.

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@swamidass

If by this you mean an actively practicing (rigorous) scientist would be less quick to dismiss the Peaceful Science scenarios, I better understand your view.

But frankly, I think this is a miscalculation. At the very least, and to use a phrase I detest: “It is what it is”.

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As for this statement below:

@swamidass

Agreed.

But your conflict with BioLogos is based upon their flawed view of how theology and science can interact … not because they don’t understand science.

Religious notions cause trouble “going in” and “going out”.

In any case, they are not beyond redemption - - and eventually they will see the big picture.

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I totally agree.

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2 posts were split to a new topic: Christians Doing Christian Things