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Dr. Elaine Howard Ecklund, Professor of Sociology, Rice University Bethe House


April 15, 2010 at 6:30 PM EDT


411 Willard Straight Hall

We will discuss what scientists think about religion and whether they perceive any possible areas of overlap with science. In particular we will uncover the surprising reasons scientists believe and the surprising reasons scientists do not believe.

Elaine Howard Ecklund is Assistant Professor of Sociology at Rice University, where she also serves as a Rice Scholar of the James Baker III Institute for Public Policy, and Director of the Program on Religion and Public Life at the Institute for Urban Research.

Ecklund received her BS, MA and PhD from Cornell University. Her work has appeared in numerous scholarly outlets including the Annual Review of Sociology, Social Forces, andAmerican Behavioral Scientist. Her first book, Korean American Evangelicals: New Models for Civic Life was published by Oxford University Press.

Ecklund is currently directing three national research projects, including Religion Immigration Civic Engagement (R.I.C.E.)Influences on Science Careers, and Religion among Academic Scientists. The latter is a study on religion and spirituality among scientists at elite research universities, which already has generated widespread coverage in both popular and academic periodicals. See, for example:

  • Beyond the God Delusion,” part of web forum on “Immanent Frame,” Social Science Research Council, Winter 2008.

Ecklund’s forthcoming book, which is the first work to scientifically examine the religious beliefs of the top research scientists in the United States, is entitled Science Vs. Religion: What Scientists Really Think (Oxford Press). The book will be released on April 7, 2010, just one week before her visit to Cornell.

Please join us to hear about this important new research from one of America’s finest young sociologists of religion.


Co-sponsored by Bethe House, Cornell United Religious Work (CURW), and Oxford University Press.

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