Swamidass is being honored for his work in applying machine learning to chemical biology and medicine, with a particular focus on drug discovery and how drugs are processed in the body. He also is being recognized for extraordinary public outreach promoting an understanding of science among communities of faith.
His public outreach advances understanding of human evolution and of race and racism within communities of faith. His 2019 book, “The Genealogical Adam and Eve,” proposes a reading of the biblical story of Adam and Eve that is consistent with evolutionary science. The book also explains scientific problems with the theory of polygenesis, the debunked idea that different races of people arose independently in different parts of the world. This discredited theory contributes to systemic racism by articulating inaccurate and disproven ideas about inherent racial differences.
He also served as an adviser for the exhibit “Scripture and Science: Our Universe, Ourselves, Our Place” at the Museum of the Bible in Washington, D.C. The exhibit, which runs through January 2024, explores the Bible’s role in the historical relationship between science and religion.