New Zealand Christians in Science: Building a Community of Scientists and Theologians to Engage the Nation
January 2, 2017 - December 27, 2019
Core Funding Area:
Director: Dr. Graeme John FinlayInstitution: New Zealand Christians in Science
New Zealand Christians in Science (NZCIS) aims to promote engagement between science in industry and the academy and the Christian faith. Over a three-year period, this project will support the launch of NZCIS through efforts to stir up interest in science and religion. The goal is to create long-term, self-sustaining groups. Long after the grant is finished, these groups will continue to discuss topical issues at the intersection of science and theology. To do this, we will drum up interest through launch events at four major universities: Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, and Dunedin. In each city, these events will seed small groups that will provide focused gatherings of practicing scientists, university students, and other interested people.
Grant funds will provide initial learning materials for these groups. Quarterly seminars will provide support and stimulus, gathering the various local groups together to enable shared conversations and relationships among the cities. The conferences will then expand the learning from a local conversation to a national one. An important part of the seminars and the conferences is their relationship to the group Theology And the Natural Sciences in Aotearoa (TANSA; Aotearoa is the Māori name for New Zealand). TANSA, which has been active for seven years, is a group of theologians interested in the natural sciences. It is thus a natural counterpart for the science-focused NZCIS. The conferences and seminars will combine these two groups to bring the strengths of each the discussion. Alongside the conferences, media releases and social media activities will reach people who might otherwise never hear of NZCIS.
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