A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism (or Dissent From Darwinism) is the name given by the Discovery Institute to a petition which they produced and continue to use to promote intelligent design. The Discovery Institute is a conservative public policy US Think tank based in Seattle Washington, best known for its advocacy of Intelligent Intelligent It is a list of signatories attesting to a statement expressing skepticism about the ability of natural selection to account for the complexity of life, and encouraging careful examination of the evidence for "Darwinism". Natural selection is the process by which favorable Heritable traits become more common in successive Generations of a Population of Darwinism is a term used for various different movements or concepts related to a greater or lesser extent to Charles Darwin 's work on Evolution. This list was first published in 2001, in advertisements under an added introduction which stated that its signatories dispute the assertion that Darwin’s theory of evolution fully explains the complexity of living things, and dispute that "all known scientific evidence supports [Darwinian] evolution". Charles Robert Darwin (February 12 1809 &ndash April 19 1882 was an English naturalist, who realised and demonstrated that all Species of life eVolution is the third Album by eLDee, it was due to be released in 2008  Dissent From Darwinism is one of the Discovery Institute intelligent design campaigns to discredit evolution and bolster claims that intelligent design is scientifically valid by creating the impression that evolution lacks broad scientific support. Discovery Institute intelligent design campaigns are a series of related Public relations campaigns conducted by the Discovery Institute which seek to promote  The Discovery Institute presents the list in an appeal to authority to support its anti-evolution viewpoint. An appeal to authority or argument by authority is a type of argument in Logic called a fallacy 
The document itself has been the subject of controversy and extensive criticism from a variety of sources. The statement in the document has been branded as artfully phrased to represent a diverse range of opinions, set in a context which gives it a misleading spin to confuse the public.  The listed affiliations and areas of expertise of the signatories have also been criticized.  The Discovery Institute states that signatories are "listed by doctoral degree or current position", but the accuracy of this claim has been disputed.
In addition, the list was signed by only about 0. 01% of scientists in the relevant fields and is unrepresentative of the total scientific population.  Therefore, the document gives an inaccurate impression of the situation in the scientific community. The scientific community consists of the total body of Scientists its relationships and interactions  The theory of evolution is overwhelmingly accepted throughout the scientific community. eVolution is the third Album by eLDee, it was due to be released in 2008 The level of support for evolution among scientists the public and other groups is a topic that frequently arises in the Creation-evolution controversy and touches on educational The scientific community consists of the total body of Scientists its relationships and interactions  Professor Brian Alters of McGill University, an expert in the creation-evolution controversy, is quoted in an article published by the NIH as stating that "99. Brian J Alters (BSc PhD USC) is an Associate Professor of Education and Sir William Dawson Scholar at McGill University, where he also holds The creation-evolution controversy (also termed the creation vs "NIH" redirects here For other meanings of NIH see NIH (disambiguation. 9 percent of scientists accept evolution". 
A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism states that:
We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.
The statement, and its title, refer to evolution as "Darwinism" or "Darwinian theory", both of which are vague, misleading and are not used by scientists to refer to current theories. eVolution is the third Album by eLDee, it was due to be released in 2008 Darwinism is a term used for various different movements or concepts related to a greater or lesser extent to Charles Darwin 's work on Evolution. In fact, the use of the term "Darwinism" in modern usage is usually a pejorative term employed only by creationists. Darwinism is a term used for various different movements or concepts related to a greater or lesser extent to Charles Darwin 's work on Evolution. "Creationism" can also refer to Creation myths in general or to a concept about the origin of the soul. 
It should be noted that Charles Darwin himself described natural selection as being "the main but not exclusive means of modification" of species. Charles Robert Darwin (February 12 1809 &ndash April 19 1882 was an English naturalist, who realised and demonstrated that all Species of life Natural selection is the process by which favorable Heritable traits become more common in successive Generations of a Population of  The modern theory of evolution additionally includes recombination as a source of variation and genetic drift and gene flow as mechanisms, meaning that the current theory of evolution, the neoDarwinian modern synthesis, does not in fact claim "the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Genetic recombination is the process by which a strand of genetic material (usually DNA; but can also be RNA) is broken and then joined to a different DNA molecule In Population genetics, genetic drift is the accumulation of random events that change the makeup of a gene pool slightly but often compound over time In Population genetics, gene flow (also known as gene migration) is the transfer of Alleles of Genes from one Population to another " This creates a degree of ambiguity as to what it is that the petition is a "dissent from. " Skip Evans, of the National Center for Science Education, suggests that this confusion has in fact been carefully engineered. The National Center for Science Education ( NCSE) is a non-profit organization based in Oakland California affiliated with the American Association for the Advancement 
By promoting a false perception that evolution is the subject of wide controversy and debate within the scientific community, the list is used to lend support to other Discovery Institute campaigns, including "Teach the Controversy", "Critical Analysis of Evolution", "Free Speech on Evolution", and "Stand Up For Science". The Discovery Institute is a conservative public policy US Think tank based in Seattle Washington, best known for its advocacy of Intelligent Teach the Controversy is the name of a Discovery Institute intelligent design campaign to promote Intelligent design, a variant of traditional Creationism Critical Analysis of Evolution is the name of both a proposed high school science Lesson plan promoting Intelligent design and a tactic to promote design using Free Speech on Evolution is a Discovery Institute intelligent design campaign. Stand Up For Science was a Discovery Institute intelligent design campaign intended to promote the teaching of Intelligent design in Public high school  For example, in its "Teach the Controversy" campaign, the Institute claims that "evolution is a theory in crisis" and that many scientists criticize evolution and citing the list as evidence or a resource.  This Discovery Institute also asserts that this information is being withheld from students in public high school science classes along with "alternatives" to evolution such as intelligent design.  The Institute uses A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism as evidence to support its claim that evolution is widely disputed within the scientific community. 
The list was advertised in prominent periodicals such as The New York Review of Books, The New Republic, and The Weekly Standard in October and November 2001, "to rebut bogus claims by Darwinists that no reputable scientists are skeptical of Darwinism" by "producing a list of 100 scientific dissenters. The New York Review of Books (or NYREV or NYRB) is a semimonthly Magazine on Literature, Culture, and current The New Republic ( TNR) is an American Magazine of politics and the arts The Weekly Standard is an American opinion Magazine published 48 times per year " Its initial release was timed to coincide with the airing of the PBS evolution series at the end of 2001. The Public Broadcasting Service ( PBS) is a Non-profit Public broadcasting Television service with 354 member TV stations in the Evolution is a 2001 documentary series by the American broadcaster PBS and WGBH on Evolutionary biology.
The Discovery Institute has continued to collect signatures, reporting 300 in 2004, over 400 in 2005, over 600 in 2006 (though in 2006 the Discovery Institute began to include scientists from outside of the United States), and over 700 in 2007.  The Discovery Institute includes a description of the list in a response to one of its "Top Questions". 
The Discovery Institute-related organization Physicians and Surgeons for Scientific Integrity manages "Physicians and Surgeons who Dissent from Darwinism", a similar list for medical professionals. The Physicians and Surgeons for Scientific Integrity (PSSI formally registered as PSSI International Inc, is a nonprofit anti- Evolution organization promoting Physicians and Surgeons who Dissent from Darwinism is a petition promoting Intelligent design. The Discovery Institute compiled and distributed other similarly confusing and misleading lists of local scientists during controversies over evolution education in Georgia, New Mexico, Ohio, and Texas. The State of Georgia ( is a state in the United States and was one of the original Thirteen Colonies that revolted against British rule New Mexico ( is a state located in the southwestern region of the United States of America. Ohio ( is a Midwestern state of the United States. As part of the Great Lakes region, Ohio has long been a cultural and geographical crossroads Texas ( is a state geographically located in the South Central United States and is also known as the Lone Star State. 
The Scientific Dissent From Darwinism document has been widely criticized on several different grounds. First, similar to previous appeals to authority produced by other creationists, the professional expertise of those listed is not always apparent and is alleged to be deficient.  Also, the professional affiliations and credentials that are claimed for some of the signatories has been questioned. Finally, there appear to be many who appear on the list who are not firmly committed to the agenda advanced by the Discovery Institute, and who have been misled into signing or who have changed their minds. The Discovery Institute is a conservative public policy US Think tank based in Seattle Washington, best known for its advocacy of Intelligent
The list has been criticized by many organizations and publications for lacking any true experts in the relevant fields of research, primarily biology. Foundations of modern biology There are five unifying principles Critics have noted that of the 105 "scientists" listed on the original 2001 petition, fewer than 20% were biologists, with few of the remainder having the necessary expertise to contribute meaningfully to a discussion of the role of natural selection in evolution (a pattern that has persisted), that the wording and advertising of the initial statement statement was, and is, misleading, and that a review of the signatories suggested many doubt evolution due to religious, rather than scientific beliefs.  The list has also been called intellectually dishonest due to its lack of relevant experts while trying to divert the attention from the real issues of creationism and evolution, a minuscule representation of relevant experts, and a blatant appeal to authority who in this case are irrelevant non-expert authorities. An appeal to authority or argument by authority is a type of argument in Logic called a fallacy  PZ Myers further stated that one signatory was "proud" of his ignorance of evolution, stating that like Michael Behe, he was able to ignore contradictory information that had been placed in front of him. Paul Zachary "PZ" Myers (born March 9, 1957) is an American biology professor at the University of Minnesota Morris (UMM and Michael J Behe (born 1952 is an American Biochemist and Intelligent design advocate 
Southeastern Louisiana University philosophy professor Barbara Forrest and deputy director of the National Center for Science Education Glenn Branch say the Discovery Institute deliberately misrepresents the institutional affiliations of signatories of the statement "A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism". Southeastern Louisiana University is a state-funded public University that is located in the city of Hammond, Louisiana. Barbara Carroll Forrest, PhD is a professor of Philosophy at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond Louisiana The National Center for Science Education ( NCSE) is a non-profit organization based in Oakland California affiliated with the American Association for the Advancement  The institutions appearing in the list are the result of a conscious choice by the Discovery Institute to only present the most prestigious affiliations available for an individual. The Discovery Institute is a conservative public policy US Think tank based in Seattle Washington, best known for its advocacy of Intelligent For example, if someone was trained at a more prestigious institution than the one they are presently affiliated with, the school they graduated from will more often be listed, without the distinction being made clear in the list. This is contrary to standard academic and professional practice and, according to Forrest and Branch, is deliberately misleading.
For example, the institutions listed for Raymond G. Bohlin, Fazale Rana, and Jonathan Wells, were the University of Texas, Ohio University, and the University of California, Berkeley respectively, the schools from which they obtained their Ph. This is a list of people and organisations involved in the Creation-evolution controversy. John Corrigan "Jonathan" Wells (born c 1946) is an American author and a prominent advocate of Intelligent design who has devoted his life Ohio University is a public university located in Athens Ohio that is situated on a 1800 acre (7 The University of California Berkeley (also referred to as Cal, Berkeley and UC Berkeley) is a major research university located in Berkeley D. degrees. However, their present affiliations are quite different: Probe Ministries for Bohlin, the Reasons to Believe Ministry for Rana, and the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture for Wells. This is a list of people and organisations involved in the Creation-evolution controversy. Hugh Norman Ross (born July 24 1945) is a Canadian -born Old Earth creationist and Christian apologist. The Discovery Institute is a conservative public policy US Think tank based in Seattle Washington, best known for its advocacy of Intelligent The Center for Science and Culture (CSC formerly known as the Center for Renewal of Science and Culture (CRSC is part of the Discovery Institute, a conservative
Many of those who have signed the list are not currently active scientists, and some have never worked as scientists. For example, Leonard Loose signed the Dissent document at the age of 96, after a career as a high school teacher and missionary, but is listed as being affiliated with his alma mater, the University of Leeds, even though Loose's affiliation with the University of Leeds and the scientific community ended over 70 years ago. Alma mater is Latin for "nourishing mother" It was used in Ancient Rome as a title for the mother Goddess, and in Medieval The University of Leeds is a major teaching and research University in Leeds, West Yorkshire; one of the largest in the United Kingdom with
Also, if a signatory was previously the head of a department or the president of an institute, their past and most prestigious position will be listed, not their current position. For example, Ferenc Jeszenszky is a physicist in Budapest who handles the "Hungarian Creation Research" videos, but appears instead on the list as "Former Head of the Center of Research Groups, Hungarian Academy of Sciences". Budapest ( also /ˈbʊ-/) is the capital city of Hungary. As the largest city of Hungary it serves as the country's principal Political, The Hungarian Academy of Sciences (in short HAS, in Hungarian Magyar Tudományos Akadémia) was founded in 1825, when Count István Széchenyi
Visitors at prestigious institutions will have that affiliation listed, not their more humble home institutions. For example, Bernard d'Abrera, a writer and publisher of books on butterflies, appears on the list as "Visiting Scholar, Department of Entomology British Museum (Natural History)", in spite of the fact that this museum had become independent of the British Museum three decades previously and had formally changed its name to the Natural History Museum almost a decade before the petition. Bernard d'Abrera (born 1940 is a Natural history photographer and publisher particularly noted for his books on Papilionoidea (true butterflies The British Museum is a Museum of human history and culture in London. The Natural History Museum is one of three large Museums on Exhibition Road, South Kensington, London (the others are the Science Museum d'Abrera's primary affiliation is with his publishing company, Hill House Publishers. d'Abrera does not have a PhD either, nor any formal scientific qualification (his undergraduate degree was a double major in History & Philosophy of Science, and History), although creationists often call him "Dr. d'Abrera".  It is not clear how many other signatories of the list do not have a PhD either, although the Discovery Institute currently recruits people with PhDs to sign the Dissent petition. 
At least one other signatory, Forrest Mims, has neither a PhD nor any formal academic training in science. Forrest M Mims III is an amateur scientist and magazine columnist and the author of the popular Engineer's Mini-Notebook series of instructional books originally sold in Additionally, at least seven signatories have their advanced degrees from outside the areas of "engineering, mathematics, computer science, biology, chemistry, or one of the other natural sciences" that are currently being recruited: Ronald R. Crawford has his Ed. D. in Science Education, David Berlinski has his PhD in Philosophy, Tom McMullen has his PhD in the History & Philosophy of Science, Angus Menuge has his PhD in the Philosophy of Psychology, Stephen Meyer has his PhD in the Philosophy of Science, Tony Prato has his PhD in Agricultural Economics, and Tianyou Wang has his PhD in Education and at least six, Jeffrey M. Schwartz, Ricardo León Borquez (incorrectly listed as "Ricardo Leon"), Gage Blackstone, Daniel Galassini, Mary A. David Berlinski (born 1942 in New York City) is an American educator and author of books on Mathematics. This page is for the intelligent design advocate and Discovery Institute officer Stephen C Jeffrey M Schwartz, MD is a well known American scientist in the field of Neuroplasticity, and its application to Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD Brown and Thomas C. Majerus, have professional doctorates (such as an MD, DVM or PharmD), rather than holding a research doctorate (such as a PhD). A doctorate is an Academic degree that indicates the highest level of academic achievement Doctor of Medicine ( MD or MD, from the Latin Medicinæ Doctor meaning "Teacher of Medicine" is a doctoral A veterinarian ( American English) or a Veterinary surgeon ( British English) often shortened to vet, is a Physician North America Canada In Canada the PharmD program is offered in both English and French. A doctorate is an Academic degree that indicates the highest level of academic achievement "PhD" redirects here for other uses see PhD (disambiguation.
Also, in early editions of the list, Richard Sternberg was described as "Richard Sternberg, Invertebrate Zoology, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution" though Sternberg was never a Smithsonian staff member, but an unpaid research associate. Richard M Sternberg is an American scientist and Intelligent design proponent The National Museum of Natural History is a Natural history Museum administered by the Smithsonian Institution, located on the National The Smithsonian Institution (smɪθsoʊnɪən is an educational and research institute and associated Museum complex administered and funded by the Government of  At the time of signing the list Sternberg was the outgoing editor of the Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, a minor biology journal, where he played a central role in the Sternberg peer review controversy. The Sternberg peer review controversy concerns the conflict arising from the publication of an article supporting the controversial concept of Intelligent design in Later versions of the list dropped mention of Sternberg's affiliation with the Smithsonian in favor of Sternberg's alma maters, Florida International University and Binghamton University. Florida International University, commonly referred to as FIU or Florida International, is a public Research University located The State University of New York at Binghamton (SUNY Binghamton or Binghamton University is one of the four university centers in New York State’s system of At present Sternberg is a Staff Scientist with GenBank, the genetic database at the National Institutes of Health. The GenBank Sequence database is an Open access, annotated collection of all publicly available Nucleotide sequences and their Protein translations "NIH" redirects here For other meanings of NIH see NIH (disambiguation. 
Critics also say the Discovery Institute inflates the academic credentials and affiliations of signatories such as Henry F. Schaefer. Henry "Fritz" Schaefer III (born June 8, 1944) is a computational and theoretical chemist The institute prominently and frequently asserts that Schaefer has been nominated for the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. The Nobel Prize in Chemistry (Nobelpriset i kemi is awarded annually by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences to scientists in the various fields of Chemistry.  Barbara Forrest and others allege that the Discovery Institute is inflating his reputation by constantly referring to him as a "five-time nominee for the Nobel Prize" despite that Nobel Prize nominations remain confidential for fifty years and there being about 250-300 nominations per prize per year. Barbara Carroll Forrest, PhD is a professor of Philosophy at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond Louisiana 
The National Center for Science Education interviewed a sample of the signatories, and found that some were less critical of "Darwinism" than the advertisement claimed. The National Center for Science Education ( NCSE) is a non-profit organization based in Oakland California affiliated with the American Association for the Advancement  For example, Stanley N. Salthe, a visiting scientist at Binghamton University, State University of New York, who signed but describes himself as an atheist, said that when he endorsed a petition he had no idea what the Discovery Institute was. The State University of New York at Binghamton (SUNY Binghamton or Binghamton University is one of the four university centers in New York State’s system of Atheism A petition is a request to change some thing most commonly made to a government official or public entity The Discovery Institute is a conservative public policy US Think tank based in Seattle Washington, best known for its advocacy of Intelligent Salthe stated, “I signed it in irritation. ” However, Salthe prominently appears on the list as "Emeritus Professor, Biological Sciences, Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. Brooklyn College is a senior college of the City University of New York, located in Brooklyn New York. The City University of New York (CUNY Acronym ˈkjuːni is the public University system of New York City. "
At least one signatory of A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism has abandoned the list, saying he felt misled. Robert C. Davidson, a Christian, scientist, doctor, and retired nephrology professor at the University of Washington medical school said after having signed he was shocked when he discovered that the Discovery Institute was calling evolution a "theory in crisis. Nephrology (from Greek nephros, " Kidney " and λόγος Logos, "speech" lit See Washington (disambiguation for other uses The University of Washington, founded in 1861, is a public research University " "It's laughable: There have been millions of experiments over more than a century that support evolution," said Davidson. "There's always questions being asked about parts of the theory, as there are with any theory, but there's no real scientific controversy about it. " "When I joined I didn't think they were about bashing evolution. It's pseudo-science, at best . . . What they're doing is instigating a conflict between science and religion. Conflict thesis is the theoretical premise of an intrinsic conflict between Science and Religion. "
A careful analysis of the 34 nominally British, or British-trained signatories of the Dissent list by the pro-evolution group British Centre for Science Education found similar problems with the list. The British Centre for Science Education (BCSE is a volunteer-run organization in the United Kingdom that has the goal of "countering creationism within the UK" and The BCSE raised doubts about the claimed affiliations, commitment to intelligent design and relevant expertise of those on the list. 
As a humorous response parodying such listing of supposed supporters, the National Center for Science Education produced Project Steve listing only scientists with doctorates in relevant fields (as opposed to the Discovery's Institute's acceptance of signatories from a variety of disciplines, including nonscientists and those without PhDs) who had signed a pro-evolution statement, except that all had to be named "Steve", or its equivalent (such as "Stephanie" or "Esteban"). The National Center for Science Education ( NCSE) is a non-profit organization based in Oakland California affiliated with the American Association for the Advancement Project Steve is a list of scientists with the Given name Stephen or a variation thereof (e About 1% of the U. S. population has a name equivalent to "Steve". As of August 2, 2007, the "Project Steve" list included 820 Steves, and it continues to grow.  The DI's list meanwhile had eight Steves as of July 25, 2007.
The DI's William Dembski has responded that "if Project Steve was meant to show that a considerable majority of the scientific community accepts a naturalistic conception of evolution, then the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) could have saved its energies -- that fact was never in question. William Albert "Bill" Dembski (born July 18 1960) is an American proponent of Intelligent design, and its opposition to the The more interesting question was whether any serious scientists reject a naturalistic conception of evolution". 
After the Discovery Institute presented the petition as part of an amicus curiae brief in the Kitzmiller v. Dover intelligent design court case in October 2005, a counter-petition, A Scientific Support For Darwinism, was organized and gathered 7733 signatures from scientists in four days. Amicus curiae or amicus curiæ (plural amici curiae) is a Legal Latin phrase literally translated as "friend of the court" Background Certain members of the Dover Board of Education expressed concern about the teaching of Evolution. Intelligent A Scientific Support for Darwinism ( And For Public Schools Not To Teach "Intelligent Design" As Science) was a four day Word-of-mouth petition of scientists
The Clergy Letter Project has collected signatures of over 10,000 American clergy who "believe that the timeless truths of the Bible and the discoveries of modern science may comfortably coexist. The Clergy Letter Project is an organization that has created and maintains a statement signed by American Christian clergy of different denominations rejecting Clergy is the generic term used to describe the formal religious leadership within a given Religion. "