Pro-Christian, Anti-Muslim or Anti-Refugee? What is behind European politicians’ statements favouring Christian refugees?

In the midst of what has come to be known as the worst refugee crisis of our generation, the wrenching images of a toddler lying dead on a Turkish beach emerged as evidence of a reality that cannot just be captured in words. This has seen many calling for the need to shift the debate …

A cut too far? The ritual slaughter debate in Britain

The World Food Summit, in 1996, agreed a definition of food security that included the requirement that food met the food preferences of communities. Indeed, it is evident that food preferences reflect aspects of culture including religious identity. Where food preferences include the consumption of animals, debates about animal welfare also arise which can come …

Debating empty chairs: creationism, climate and public engagement

This week, Making Science Public has been very proud to welcome US film director Jeff Tamblyn during his UK visit. On Wednesday we screened his amazing film, Kansas vs Darwin, a documentary charting the attempts by members of the Kansas School Board to introduce creationism and intelligent design into high school science teaching. The film …

Event: FREE screening of Kansas vs Darwin + Q+A with director Jeff Tamblyn

In May we are very honoured to welcome US film director Jeff Tamblyn for screenings of his award-winning documentary, Kansas vs Darwin, followed by Q&A sessions with Jeff. The film tells an extraordinary story: This darkly comic documentary explores the epic 2005 Kansas state school board hearings, in which a group of creationist politicians attempted to …

Is there something dehumanising about science?

At the recent launch of Making Science Public, the Rt. Rev Dr Lee Rayfield – a member of our programme’s advisory board and, as Bishop of Swindon and a trained medical scientist, the lead contact on science matters for the Church of England – participated in a late-afternoon panel. He posed an interesting question, which …

On Kansas, candidates and Creationism: the struggle for the heart and soul of the Republican Party in America’s Heartland

With a US general election due in November, media attention will be largely focused on whether Barack Obama will succeed in his bid to defeat the Republican Mitt Romney and win a second term in the White House. However, the Presidential vote is only one piece in a complicated electoral jigsaw puzzle, which will also …

Religion, science and public education: a cautionary tale

I arrived last Monday (9 July) in Kansas City to begin a month of fieldwork in support of my Leverhulme research on religion and science debates in the USA.  In particular, I am interested in whether these debates are having an impact on the Kansas Republican Party primary races for the state legislature and State …

Battle looms over European funding for embryonic stem cell research

This blog was written for the ‘Making Science Public’ blog by Dr Alex Smith, University of Warwick, Senior Leverhulme Research Fellow. He is Project Leader responsible for ‘Science, religion and the making of publics in the UK and the USA’. According to an interesting story in this week’s Times Higher, a strong challenge is being …