Theos

Home / Research / Reports

Science and Religion: the perils of misperception

Science and Religion: the perils of misperception

This report gathers over ten years of polling data to give the fullest picture yet of the science and religion landscape in the UK. (2019)

Interested by this? Share it on social media. Join our monthly e–newsletter to keep up to date with our latest research and events. And check out our Friends Programme to find out how you can help our work.


The ‘conflict’ between science and religion is sometimes talked up in the UK as if it were part of an emerging culture war, as it apparently is in the US.

But what is the real picture in the UK? Is Young Earth Creationism on the rise? Do religious people think more negatively about science? And if there is a conflict between science and religion, who perceives it and why?

Published to coincide with his new three–part Radio 4 documentary The Secret History of Science and Religion¸ Nick Spencer’s new Theos report “Science and Religion”: the perils of misperception gathers over ten years of polling data to give the fullest picture yet of the science and religion landscape in the UK.

Drawing on 18 major studies, the report looks at public opinion – on science and religion; evolution and creationism; scientists, scientific progress, and its moral implications – and reveals “pockets of antagonism” (rather than all–out conflict), which focus less on God or evolution, than they do the nature and status of human beings.

Nick Spencer is Senior Fellow at Theos

 Cover photo: Nebula – Illustration © Festa/Shutterstock.com

Nick Spencer

Nick Spencer

Nick is Senior Fellow at Theos. He is the author of a number of books and reports, most recently The Political Samaritan: how power hijacked a parable (Bloomsbury, 2017), The Evolution of the West (SPCK, 2016) and Atheists: The Origin of the Species (Bloomsbury, 2014). Outside of Theos, Nick is Visiting Research Fellow at the Faiths and Civil Society Unit, Goldsmiths, University of London and a Fellow of the International Society for Science and Religion

Belief, Bible, Darwin, Faith, Identity, Religion, Science

Research

See all

In the news

See all

Comment

See all

Theos researches and investigates the intersection of religion, politics and society in the contemporary world.

Get regular email updates on our latest research and events.

Please confirm your subscription in the email we have sent you.

Want to keep up to date with the latest news, reports, blogs and events from Theos? Get updates direct to your inbox once or twice a month.

Thank you for signing up.