After Science and Religion: Rethinking the Foundations of Science-Religion Discourse

May 2018May 2021
Templeton World Charity Foundation

IASH Project members:

Prof Peter Harrison – Director, IASH
Dr Paul Tyson – Senior Research Fellow, IASH
This project has four Principle Investigators: Prof Peter Harrison (History, University of Queensland), Prof John Milbank (Theology, University of Nottingham), Prof Tom McLeish (Physics, University of York), Dr Paul Tyson (Sociology, University of Queensland). Dr Tyson is coordinating the project.
This project draws on a dynamic group of leading and upcoming scholars to re-think the way in which we conceive of science and religion and their respective territories. We have two world class historians of modern science and religion in Peter Harrison and Bernard Lightman. We have two highly able scientists in Keith Fox and Spike Bucklow. We have an outstanding trio of dual capability scholars who are both scientifically and theologically acclaimed in Tom McLeish, David Wilkinson and Andrew Davison. And we have a group of leading and upcoming philosophical theologians in Rowan Williams, John Milbank, William Desmond, Michael Northcott, Janet Soskice, Catherine Pickstock, Simon Oliver, Knut Alfsvåg, Michael Hanby, David C Schindler, Sotiris Mitralexis, Simone Kotva, Nathan Lyons, Pui Him Ip, and Paul Tyson.
The distinctive premise of this project is that it does not presuppose that ‘science’ and ‘religion’ are natural kinds. Rather, science and religion have been defined and constructed within a distinctive temporal and cultural context to perform separate (or competing) functions, and the way those natures and territories are defined have far reaching consequences. Thus Peter Harrison’s text The Territories of Science and Religion is the leaping off point for this investigation.
The project will run for three years and anticipates producing two edited volumes and one monograph. The edited volumes will probably be titled “Theology and Science – towards a new conversation” and “Theologians on Science – new possibilities.” The monography, to be written by Dr Tyson, will probably be titled “Theology of Science”.


Project members

Professor Peter Harrison

Professor Peter Harrison

Emeritus Professor
Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities