miércoles, mayo 23, 2007

Intelligent design in tenure candidates?

In the News section of NATURE of May 23th, there is an article entitled “Darwin sceptic says views cost tenure” referring to the situation of the cuban astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez, whose tenure application at Iowa State´s physics department had been turned down on March 9th.

The 43-year-old astronomer not only considers himself as a “sceptic” of Darwin´s ideas, but is a deeply religious evangelical Christian, who has co-authored a book in 2004 entitled “The privileged planet” and had been delivering talks throughout the USA since then.

Gonzalez is now appealing to Iowa State´s president, claiming religious discrimination.

Although Gonzalez had been productive since his arrival at Iowa State´s in 2001, the scientific committee at the physics department had turned down four out of twelve tenure candidates in the last decade, and says that his view regarding ID was not the determinant reason.

I believe that tenure candidatures should not be discarded because they are sceptical with Darwin´s (or anyone´s) ideas, as the news´ title seems to suggest, but a scientific research position at any serious university cannot be assigned to people that promote bypassing the search of generative mechanisms, as is the heart of the scientific endeavour, by proposing fantastic and finalistic unscientific views to students and the general public, regardless their productivity in peer reviewed journals.

Rodrigo Suárez

1 comentario:

Sanders dijo...

In fact, he is using his academic credentials as a façade for saying to the public stuff that would never be accepted by the scientific community. This is not the idea of science and academia, it's more like "cacademia" haha.
I agree, scietific merit is not enough: transparency and honesty are also top criteria.
A similar case happened recently with a young earth creationist obtaining his phd in paleontology, about biogeografy of the mosasaurs, I think, and simply put the dates that are accepted, although he does not believe in them. He got a job immediatley afterwards in the creationist "liberty" university teaching the earth is 7000 years old.