Chris Mooney is at it again. His latest posting sounds ominous: Are Top Scientists Really So Atheistic? Look at the Data.
Elaine Howard Ecklund is a sociologist at Rice University; we cited her work on the topic of science and religion in Unscientific America. Now, she is out with a book that is going to seriously undercut some widespread assumptions out there concerning the science religion relationship.Unfortunately, Chris doesn't present any data because he's not a scientist. Data really isn't his thing.
I don't have a copy of the book so I can't check it myself. Fortunately, Razib Khan, one of Chris Mooney's fellow bloggers on the Discover website, was able to find some of the data [Scientists as “spiritual atheists”].
Let's be clear about one thing. This is not a poll of scientists. It's a poll of American scientists. The title of Ecklund's book, Science vs Religion: What Scientists Really Think, is somewhat misleading.1 Here's two charts from the book.
Hmmm ... none of my assumptions have been undercut. How about yours?
I guess what Chris Mooney means is that some of his assumptions will have to be re-evaluated. It's about time.
1. Unless you're an American. Then you probably believe that all scientists live in the USA.