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Faraday Institute Newsletter No. 118 - December 2015

December 2015 Newsletter No.118
A Reflection of 2015
As we enter the period of Advent we also stop to reflect on the past year and the exciting things that have happened in the Faraday Institute. The completion of one major research grant and the start of another has seen changes in staff as well as a growth in the disciplines and areas of investigation. We have continued our dissemination through an array of avenues. In March the play “Let Newton Be! ( ”, which Faraday commissioned, was seen by over ninety school students and their teachers and 130 regular theatre-goers as part of Cambridge Science Week. In July, we held our tenth summer course hosting 47 delegates and 16 speakers from over 15 different countries, not to mention the other 5 courses held including one in Guatamala. More recently, the short course on ‘The Believing Brain’ was very successful and was attended by nearly 40 delegates, from a wide range of backgrounds, ages and academic fields.
Our staff have been ‘out-and-about’ in a variety of countries and settings engaging in interdisciplinary interactions. Our public engagement has grown with five ‘podcast’ playlists ( on the Cambridge University Soundcloud, which are often in the top 5 each week. With many new avenues as well as the continuation of historical unions we continue to grow.
Advent brings hope and Christmas celebration; when we return in the New Year, we are set to start even more fruitful interactions and journeys.

The Faraday Institute team wishes you a Happy Christmas and we look forward to updating you in the New Year.
Upcoming Events

6-8 January 2016
Short course in Cambridge
Science & Religion in the Local Church (

26 January 2016
Research Seminar
Dr.James Moore (
'Young Wallace' (

9 February 2016
Research Seminar
Dr. Cees Dekker (
My meandering path within the lands of science and faith

23 February 2016
Research Seminar
Prof Monica Grady (
'Comets and Asteroids, Moon and Mars, Science and Faith - and Life and Death'

The Faraday Institute
Who are we?

A great evening of interactions at this year's Annual Reception.

Short Course 34: Biology and Belief

Madingley Hall: 12-14 February 2016

This weekend course will explore a number of different areas of biology that raise important questions for humankind, and for Christian theology. For example: Are the processes of the living world ordered or chaotic? Is evolution compatible with purpose? Is there more kindness than cruelty in the world? How unique is our genetic code? The aim will be to move beyond the usual controversies about biology and belief, such as discussions about whether evolution is compatible with scripture, exploring instead questions that are coming out of current mainstream science. Lectures will be delivered by experienced scientists and theologians, with plenty of time for discussion. As with all Faraday courses, this weekend is aimed towards thinking people from a variety of backgrounds, both scientists and non-scientists.

Book ** here (
or for more information contact Rachel Simonson on  rs682@ca,
Deadline for applications: January 14, 2016
Deadline for Bursary applications: January 8, 2016
New Approaches to Communicating Science and Faith to Children

The Faraday Institute’s communication work includes a thriving youth and schools outreach programme. In addition, we have launched an exciting new project: ‘New Approaches to Communicating Science and Faith to Children’ led by Dr Denis Alexander and Lizzie Coyle.
This project is motivated by research demonstrating that many young people in schools worldwide subscribe to a view of conflict between science and religious faith by the age of 11. Our research has also demonstrated a significant dearth of books and resources for children which contribute to a science-faith friendly worldview.
Our new project aims to promote a positive engagement between science and faith through effective communication via various media materials for children in the age range 2-12. On November 2nd, we gathered 35 experts in writing, publishing, illustrating and producing digital and other creative media for children at a workshop also attended by experts in the field of science and religion and the developmental psychology of children. The day featured presentations from expert speakers as well as group discussions regarding potential ideas for new materials.
The continued development of the project will involve collaborative work towards the production of creative and engaging media outputs which communicate a positive attitude to science, faith and their interaction amongst children. For more information about the project please contact Lizzie Coyle at
Faraday out and about and courses in December and January
15 December Ruth Bancewicz  will be talking on 'Faith and DNA'  as part of City Church Cambridge's Tuesday ** Tuesdays Together: Talk and practical demonstration (
Rodney Holder is talking part in a discussion on science-faith in Caxton.
6 - 8 January The Faraday Institute's annual course for students of the Cambridge Theological Federation will take place on 6 - 8 January 2016. Entitled** ’Science and Religion in the local church’ (
it aims to tackle key issues in science and religion in the context of local church ministry.
20-30 January Denis Alexander be lecturing at Westmont College, California, followed by lectures for the Veritas Forum in Canada at universities and research institutes in Ottawa, Toronto, Waterloo and Hamilton.
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