You are here
Analysis of the Discovery Institute's Bibliography
2002 Ohio Board of Education Science Standards
by NCSE Staff
On March 11, 2002, the Discovery Institute — a Seattle, Washington, organization that seeks to promote "intelligent design" — submitted its "Bibliography of Supplementary Resources for Ohio Science Education" to the Ohio Board of Education. Although the publications listed in the Bibliography are valuable contributions to the scientific literature, the Bibliography itself is misleading. The staff of the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) analyzed the Bibliography with the assistance of many of the authors of the publications listed in it, finding (1) that the Discovery Institute misrepresents the significance of the publications in the Bibliography, (2) that the Discovery Institute's descriptions of the publications in the Bibliography are frequently inaccurate and tendentious, and (3) that the Discovery Institute fails to present any principled basis for the selection of the publications or any pedagogical rationale for their use in the classroom. NCSE concludes that the only purpose of the Discovery Institute's Bibliography is to mislead members of the Board and of the public about the status of evolution.
The Discovery Institute seeks to promote "intelligent design," defined on one of its web sites as follows:
"Intelligent design" refers to a scientific research program as well as a community of scientists, philosophers and other scholars who seek evidence of design in nature. Through the study and analysis of a system's components, a design theorist is able to determine whether various natural structures are the product of chance, natural law, intelligent design, or some combination thereof. … In nature, design theorists cite information[-]rich systems like the genetic code, irreducibly complex systems like the bacterial flagellum, and the fine-tuning of the laws of physics as evidence of intelligent design.
And it is "intelligent design" that creationist organizations such as Science Excellence for All Ohioans (SEAO) are lobbying the Board to add to the proposed state science standards, over the protests of the 45-member writing committee.
As Lawrence Krauss of Case Western Reserve University reported at the March 11 panel discussion in Columbus, there is no published work in the peer-reviewed scientific literature supporting intelligent design. For a scientific publication to be peer-reviewed is for it to be assessed for its scientific merit by experts having knowledge of the research area equal to that of the author. Peer review is essentially a form of quality control in the modern scientific world. The fact that there is no published work supporting intelligent design in the peer-reviewed scientific literature strongly suggests that the Discovery Institute's claim that "intelligent design" is a scientific theory is false.
But what of the "Bibliography of Supplementary Resources for Ohio Science Education" provided by Jonathan Wells and Stephen C. Meyer of the Discovery Institute to the Ohio Board of Education? The 44 publications listed in the Bibliography are indeed legitimate and valuable contributions to the scientific literature. But what is the point of the Bibliography itself?
As it was originally furnished to the Board, the Bibliography was prefaced with the following explanation:
The publications represent dissenting viewpoints that challenge one or another aspect of neo-Darwinism (the prevailing theory of evolution taught in biology textbooks), discuss problems that evolutionary theory faces, or suggest important new lines of evidence that biology must consider when explaining origins.
Because the representatives of the Discovery Institute who appeared at the March 11 meeting — Jonathan Wells and Stephen C. Meyer — were widely touted as promoters of "intelligent design," it would have been reasonable for the Board to assume that among the "dissenting viewpoints" included in the Bibliography was "intelligent design." But it isn't.
NCSE sent a questionnaire to the authors of every publication listed in the Bibliography, asking them whether they considered their work to provide scientific evidence for "intelligent design." None of the 26 respondents (representing 34 of the 44 publications in the Bibliography) did; many were indignant at the suggestion. For example, Douglas H. Erwin (author of ), answered, "Of course not — [intelligent design] is a non sequitur, nothing but a fundamentally flawed attempt to promote creationism under a different guise. Nothing in this paper or any of my other work provides the slightest scintilla of support for 'intelligent design'. To argue that it does requires a deliberate and pernicious misreading of the papers."Several respondents even went so far as to say that their work constituted scientific evidence against "intelligent design."
Similarly, on the basis of the explanation prefaced to the Bibliography, it would have been reasonable for the Board to assume that the publications included in the Bibliography challenged evolution. But they don't. None of the respondents to NCSE's questionnaire considered their work to provide scientific evidence against evolution. David M. Williams (coauthor of ), for example, simply remarked, "No, certainly not. How could it possibly?" Almost all of the respondents emphasized that their work provided scientific evidence for evolution. Kenneth Weiss (author of ), for example, remarked, "I state clearly that evolution is beyond dispute based on all the evidence I am aware of."
Perhaps in reaction to NCSE's questionnaire, the Discovery Institute added a disclaimer to its Bibliography when it posted it on its web site:
The publications are not presented either as support for the theory of intelligent design, or as indicating that the authors cited doubt evolution. Discovery Institute has made every effort to ensure that the annotated summaries accurately reflect the central arguments of the publications.
Shouldn't the Discovery Institute have issued such a disclaimer in the first place?
Moreover, in light of Stephen C. Meyer's declaration that the Bibliography contains publications "that raise significant challenges to key tenets of Darwinian evolution" — a declaration that significantly postdates the disclaimer — the sincerity of the disclaimer may be doubted.
2. What is the real significance of the publications in the Bibliography?
Within the Bibliography, the publications are divided into three categories: Questions of Pattern, Questions of Process, and Questions about the Central Issue: the Origin and Nature of Biological Complexity. In each of these categories, there are two issues to address: what the significance of the publications really is, and what the Discovery Institute would have people believe it is. The two are rarely the same.
a. Questions of Pattern
Phylogenetics is the field of biology that attempts to determine the genealogical relationships among organisms (phylogenies). Molecular phylogenetics is based on data from genes and other macromolecules (taken from mitochondria, ribosomes, or nuclear DNA). When molecular phylogenetics was first introduced, it was widely believed to be more reliable than morphological phylogenetics, which is based on body characteristics, but more recent research suggests that molecular phylogenetics is subject to difficulties of its own. What the publications cited in the Bibliography reflect is the current lively controversy in the scientific community about phylogenetic methodology and how to reconcile conflicts when the results of different methods disagree.
The Discovery Institute's selection of publications in the Questions of Pattern section is idiosyncratic. Over 1600 papers on molecular phylogeny have been published in the last ten years; why did the Discovery Institute select these particular 22? There is no unifying subject of the publications: they deal variously with mammals, insects, bacteria, and metazoans in general. And several of the publications are out of date; for example, Douglas H. Erwin (author of ) remarks, "Citing a paper from 1994 [i.e., ] is decidedly poor scholarship, however, given how fast this field has moved. The rapid advances in comparative developmental biology have rendered much of this pretty outdated. We now have a very well substantiated metazoan phylogeny, at least in general outline, allowing some of the tests suggested at the end of the cited passage. Moreover, comparative developmental studies have only served to emphasize the fundamental unity of bilaterian animals." There are also papers from 1993 and 1991, which are practically ancient by the standards of the fast-moving field of molecular phylogeny.
The only point of similarity of the publications in the Questions of Pattern section appears to be that there are passages in them that, if taken out of context or otherwise misrepresented, seem to express doubt about phylogeny in general. But for the Discovery Institute to insinuate that scientific debates about how to determine which organisms are related to which are debates about whether organisms are related is misleading. As Peter J. Lockhart (coauthor of ) carefully explains, in responding to the Discovery Institute's summary of his work:
I don't think it is a good representation of our work — our work does not present 'a classic challenge to evolutionary analysis'. In our paper we point out that technically it is a hard problem to reconstruct the phylogeny of corbiculate bees regardless of whether you use morphological or molecular data (the reason for this concerns the pattern of radiation — four different lineages diverged in a short period of time a long time ago — given this pattern it is not surprising that different data types might suggest different phylogenies). In our article we do not say that interpretation of the molecular data is right and that interpretation of the morphological data is wrong (or vice versa). Instead we make some suggestions which we believe will help resolve why the different data types suggest different conclusions — we suggest that the bee morphologists relook at the interpretation of some of their data and we also encourage the molecular biologists to determine some additional data which would help test their hypotheses — we suggest that if these things are done then there should be a resolution to the controversy over which phylogeny is correct. We do not doubt that there is a phylogeny — in contrast, the statement by the Discovery Institute suggests that the bee controversy is evidence for absence of phylogeny. No scientist involved in the corbiculate bee debate has ever suggested this to my knowledge.
Kenneth Weiss's article "We hold these truths to be self-evident"  is the odd article out in the section on Questions of Pattern. Weiss was not discussing phylogeny; the Discovery Institute apparently included it just in order to quote him as saying, "It is healthy to be skeptical even of truths we hold to be self-evident, and to ask: suppose it isn't true — what would follow? Do we need a theory of evolutionary biology?" Weiss told NCSE that "This is misrepresenting the fuller context. For example, the last question that is quoted was followed by my asking what would be the minimal essential elements of such a theory that biologists would insist on." And although the Discovery Institute parenthetically added, "Please note that in his footnotes, Weiss is highly skeptical of creationism, and endorses what he calls 'the fact' of evolution," Weiss responded, "The Discovery Institute does not give an honest sense of the clarity that I put in that disclaimer: 'Given the spate of recent anti-evolutionary books, I feel compelled to make the statement here that nothing in this column in any way questions the fact of evolution, nor in any way supports creationist accounts (one cannot call them "explanations") for the diversity of life.'"
b. Questions of Process
The bulk of the publications in the Questions of Process section of the Bibliography belong to the newly emerging field of evolutionary developmental biology ("evo-devo"), which has provided one of the most powerful models for explaining evolutionary novelty. As Corey S. Goodman and Bridget C. Coughlin write,
Once seen as distinct, yet complementary[,] disciplines, developmental biology and evolutionary studies have recently merged into an exciting and fruitful relationship. The official union occurred in 1999 when evolutionary developmental biology, or "evo-devo," was granted its own division in the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB). It was natural for evolutionary biologists and developmental biologists to find common ground. Evolutionary biologists seek to understand how organisms evolve and change their shape and form. The roots of these changes are found in the developmental mechanisms that control body shape and form. Developmental biologists try to understand how alterations in gene expression and function lead to changes in body shape and pattern. So although SICB only recently validated evo-devo as an independent research area, evo-devo really started over a decade ago when biologists began using an individual organism's developmental gene expression patterns to explain how groups of organisms evolved.The emergence of evo-devo is anything but a challenge to evolution.
As with the publications in the Question of Pattern section, the publications in the Questions of Process section seem to have been selected only because they provide passages that, if taken out of context or otherwise misrepresented, seem to express doubt about the neo-Darwinian synthesis or macroevolution in general. What must be understood is that although these debates about the details of evo-devo and the mechanisms of macroevolution are legitimate, they in no way affect the presentation of evolution at the high school level, which is simply not presented in enough detail for these highly technical debates to be relevant.
And as with the publications in the Questions of Pattern section, the authors themselves reject the Discovery Institute's misinterpretation of their work. Thus, for example, Günther P. Wagner (coauthor of  and author of ), wrote:
In no way does my work represent an attack on the theory of descent with modification, i.e. the plain fact of evolution, or even the fundamental insights of the neo-Darwinian theory of evolution. It is intended as an attempt to extend the explanatory reach of Darwinian evolutionary thinking by eliminating some technical limitations that result from the mathematical language currently used to model evolutionary processes. All that work agrees with and is based on the fact that evolution proceeds by the spontaneous generation of genetic variation and the fixation of these variations by selection and/or drift. The points of my papers are narrow technical ones and in no way weaken the fundamental insights of Darwinian evolutionary thinking. They do, however, challenge some of the more speculative extensions of this theory, like the idea that everything is possible with more or less equal probability. But this does not affect the fundamentals of the neo-Darwinian theory of evolution.
Scott F. Gilbert (coauthor of  and ) wrote: "My research on turtles and my research into evolutionary developmental biology is fully within Darwinian parameters. My gripe has been that neo-Darwinism has supposed that population genetics was the only genetics needed to explain Darwinian evolution. I claim that developmental genetics is also needed. So my research has been to include developmental genetics into the Darwinian mix." And Douglas L. Erwin (author of ) told NCSE, "While the article considers the relationship between micro- and macro- evolution, the Discovery Institute is inaccurate in saying that I am challenging the standard view of evolution. The treatment of macroevolution in that paper is an extension, but by no means a challenge. Further, although more work may be needed to fully understand macroevolutionary events, there is no evidence that requires, or even suggests, a role for so-called 'intelligent design'."
Although Eörs Szathmáry's article () was not included in the section on Questions of Process, his comments are relevant here. Answering the Discovery Institute's claim that the publications in the Bibliography "represent dissenting viewpoints that challenge one or another aspect of neo-Darwinism (the prevailing theory of evolution taught in biology textbooks)," Szathmáry replied, "This depends very much on how you define neo-Darwinism. First, like science in general, it is developing. Second, there are cutting-edge and pedestrian conceptualizations of neo-Darwinism. My coauthor on two books, John Maynard Smith, would be regarded by many as an arch neo-Darwinist. Yet, for those, The Major Transitions in Evolution [by Maynard Smith and Szathmáry] came as a bit of a shock... But that's only because of an outdated idea of how a neo-Darwinist should approach evolution..."
c. Questions about the Central Issue: the Origin and Nature of Biological Complexity
According to the Discovery Institute, the publications in the Questions about the Central Issue section "concerns the origin of what makes organisms distinctively what they are: the source of the specified complexity of biological information." It is wholly unclear what the Discovery Institute intends here; "specified complexity" and "biological information" are not terms with a definite meaning within the scientific community. They are, however, prominent terms in the philosophical and theological writings of Discovery Institute Senior Fellow William A. Dembski, author of Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science and Theology (Downers Grove IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999), which may explain their appearance here.
The publications are a hodgepodge of work from various disciplines (biomimetics, artificial life and artificial intelligence, the origin of life, investigations into the minimal genome) with little in common — except, of course, that they contain passages that, if taken out of context or otherwise misrepresented, seem to express doubt about evolution. Again, the authors themselves reject the Discovery Institute's misinterpretation of their work. Philip Ball told NCSE that his paper on biomimetics  is in fact evidence for "the effectiveness of evolution in fine-tuning the properties and features of natural systems." Rodney Brooks (author of ) complained that "they have selectively quoted just parts of what I wrote in order to distort completely what I said in the article." Leslie E. Orgel (author of ) wrote,
The paper is intended to support a conventional Darwinian form of evolution based on reproduction, selection, and mutation of polymeric molecules and to argue against a different form of evolution based on self-organizing cycles of chemical reaction. Supporters of both sides of the argument take evolution for granted, as do all competent biologists, but they disagree about important details. … it would be appropriate to point out that all scientists carrying out experimental work on the origins of life believe that one form or another of Darwinism can adequately explain the origin of life on the earth without any recourse to "intelligent design."
3. Is the Bibliography reliable?
As the preceding discussion indicates, the Discovery Institute's view of the significance of the publications in its Bibliography was uniformly rejected by the authors themselves. But was the Discovery Institute able to summarize the arguments of the publications in its Bibliography correctly? No. More than half of the respondents to NCSE's questionnaire considered the summaries in the Bibliography to be inaccurate and tendentious. Here is a sampling of their responses.
Eugene V. Koonin (coauthor of ): "…the conclusion that this is 'a hypothesis quite unexpected on neo-Darwinian (common ancestry) assumptions' is (i) not taken from our paper and (ii) not at all compatible with the data or ideas presented in the paper."
David P. Mindell (coauthor of ): "The words enclosed in quotation marks are accurate. However, the quotes are entirely misinterpreted and taken out of context. This is just as the scientific community, and at least some of the public, has come to expect from the Discovery Institute."
Paul Morris (coauthor of ): "The quotations are accurate; their assembly is a little misleading (the context of the first quote is a discussion of similar amino acids assembled by different synthesis pathways, where the evidence for homology lies in the synthesis pathways rather than in the amino acids, while the second quote is in the context of discussion of protein sequence similarity). The implications, particularly that molecular data are unable to reconstruct the history of life, are complete distortions of what we said."
David M. Williams (coauthor of ): "The short answer to your question, 'Do you consider this accurate?' is no."
Michael K. Richardson (coauthor of ): "Partly accurate and partly ambiguous. The creationists have taken a very complicated argument and extracted from it the bits and pieces that fit their world view. In particular, I have some problems with the following statement: 'There is no single stage of embryogenesis in vertebrates where all forms are similar.' In fact, there are strong resemblances between vertebrate embryos at various times in development, but it is not possible to ascribe them to a single stage."
Douglas L. Erwin (author of ): "While the article considers the relationship between micro- and macro- evolution, the statement above is inaccurate in saying that I am challenging the standard view of evolution. The treatment of macro-evolution in that paper is an extension, but by no means a challenge."
David W. Deamer (author of ): "No! The misleading (and loaded) words, of course, are 'greater realism.' Those were supplied gratis by the Discovery Institute folks. The correct words would be 'increased understanding'. The main cultural gap separating thoughtful scientists from creationists and intelligent design adherents is that the life blood of science is to ask questions about the world around us, while the creationists seek a feeling of certainty that they have all the answers. Those answers, of course, are encapsulated in an unquestioning belief in religious doctrine (the creationists) or that the universe must have a greater purpose of some sort (intelligent design). Therefore whenever a scientist writes about questions to which we don't yet have answers, the creationists pounce on this 'confession' as proof of weakness, implying that they have all the answers."
Again, more than half of the Discovery Institute's summaries were rejected as inaccurate and tendentious by the authors themselves. So if the Discovery Institute were being graded on its ability to summarize these publications, it would flunk. Should the state of Ohio be guided in the development of its science standards by people who are apparently incapable of reliably and objectively summarizing the scientific literature?
4. What is the pedagogical value of the Bibliography?
The preceding sections have already amply demonstrated that the Discovery Institute's interpretation of the publications in the Bibliography is tendentious and that its understanding of the publications is unreliable. But what about the pedagogical value of the Bibliography?
According to the Bibliography, "The publications represent dissenting viewpoints that challenge one or another aspect of neo-Darwinism (the prevailing theory of evolution taught in biology textbooks), discuss problems that evolutionary theory faces, or suggest important new lines of evidence that biology must consider when explaining origins." It also states, "These 44 scientific publications represent important lines of evidence and puzzles that any theory of evolution must confront, and that science teachers and students should be allowed to discuss when studying evolution."
But who is the Discovery Institute to make these judgments? Does the staff of the Discovery Institute, to which the authorship of the Bibliography is credited, include any important scientific contributors to the topics discussed? No — significantly, the Bibliography contains no publications by anyone associated with the Discovery Institute. Does the Bibliography cite the experience of any working K–12 science teachers? No. Does it rely on the research of any specialists in developing science curricula? No. Is any indication given in the Bibliography that the Discovery Institute has actually examined the instructional materials in use in Ohio and ascertained their deficiencies? No. Are there any concrete suggestions in it for science teachers how to incorporate these publications in their lessons? No. There is merely the blanket, anonymous, unsubstantiated claim that these publications "represent important lines of evidence and puzzles that any theory of evolution must confront, and that science teachers and students should be allowed to discuss when studying evolution." The Board of Education should not accept the claim uncritically.
NCSE's questionnaire also asked whether the authors considered their work appropriate for use in high-school biology classes. Some of the respondents simply did not know; others said that it was. But several explained that their publications would be inappropriate for use in high-school biology classes, for a variety of reasons.
First, despite the Discovery Institute's boast that "Over half of the papers listed below were published within the past 2–3 years, with the remainder published throughout the 1990s," several respondents noted that their work was already outdated. For example, David M. Williams (coauthor of ) wrote, "our review was written nearly 10 years ago and things have moved on since then. Many of the possible solutions to data incongruence we suggested then have now been acted upon and molecules and morphology agree in many more cases. In fact, many more examples using molecules and morphology together highlight and clarify topics relating directly to many evolutionary issues."
Second, many respondents remarked that their publications were intended for a specialist audience; for example, Keith Stewart Thomson (author of ) replied, "No, it is totally inappropriate, as it can only be judged in terms of a knowledge of the particular detailed subject matter. It is part of a sophisticated professional discusssion within a part of the subject of evolution, not a general exposition for general readers," and Kenneth Weiss (author of ) explained, "I was writing for a professional audience; to point out issues in evolutionary biology to high-school students would require fuller explanations of the underlying knowledge one needs before getting to the types of issues I was writing about."
Third, several respondents explained that their work is as yet too speculative to be included in high-school biology classes. Leslie E. Orgel (author of ), for example, remarked, "Like most researchers, I work at the frontiers of present-day knowledge. The misinterpretation of my work routinely promulgated by crypto-creationists is certainly not suitable for inclusion in high-school textbooks. I doubt that the time is ripe for a detailed and correct interpretation of my work at the high-school level." And Günther P. Wagner (coauthor of  and author of ) explains, "It is not settled enough to be an established part of scientific teaching. This is cutting-edge research and we cannot yet know whether it will stand up under the scrutiny of our colleagues. There is too much work to be done to determine whether our ideas and results turn out to be correct and useful for further research." Orgel's and Wagner's attitude instructively contrasts with that of the promoters of "intelligent design," who wish for their views to be taught at the high-school level before they have been accepted by the scientific community.
NCSE also asked Brian J. Alters, an internationally recognized expert on science education who holds appointments at Harvard University and McGill University, where he is the Director of the Evolution Education Research Centre, to comment on the pedagogical value of the Bibliography. Alters responded,
When high school students read such relatively complex discussions written for scientists, they often believe that the authors are contending that evolution is a theory in crisis. But when such articles are read by those with the proper university training in science, those readers do not conclude that the authors are contending that evolution is a theory in crisis. This difference is very telling and probably explains why the Discovery Institute selected these particular papers. After all, the Institute gives no rationale for the selection. Of all the colleagues I know in North America, none of those university science educators with expertise in training high school teachers would have selected these papers for high school students. So again, why were these particular papers selected? Not only is this selection of papers inappropriate for the high school level, it will likely engender numerous misconceptions among high school students about the science of evolution — something no science teacher would want.
So not only has the Discovery Institute failed to provide any pedagogical rationale for its Bibliography, it is extremely difficult to see that there is any conceivable pedagogical value to it.
5. Working in the quote mine
The tactic of abusing the primary scientific literature for the purpose of misleading the general public is not new to the anti-evolutionist movement. Writing in 1981, John R. Cole explained:
Creationists have developed a skill unique to their trade: that of misquotation and quotation out of context from the works of leading evolutionists. This tactic not only frustrates scientists but it misleads school board members, legislators, and the public. Whether such actions by creationists of selectively seeking out quotations or references in order to prove a preconceived case are willful distortion or the product of wishful thinking is irrelevant. Such acts misuse science and scientists in bogus appeals to authority.
The practice is so frequent among creationists (as well as other practitioners of pseudoscience) that it receives a name: quote-mining. There are even books devoted to nothing but quote-mining.
The Discovery Institute is accumulating quite a record of quote-mining of its own. Jonathan Wells's Icons of Evolution (Washington DC: Regnery, 2000) is essentially a compendium of quote-mining intended to discredit evolution in general; the reviewers for Nature, Science, and The Quarterly Review of Biology were unanimous in finding nothing of scientific or pedagogical value in it. The Discovery Institute's Getting the Facts Straight: A Viewer's Guide to PBS's Evolution (Seattle WA: Discovery Institute, 2001) is another exercise in quote-mining, intended to discredit the recent critically acclaimed PBS series on evolution in particular. Jerry Coyne, one of the scientists whose views were misrepresented by the Discovery Institute in Getting the Facts Straight, commented, "The Discovery Institute is up to its old tricks. Given the complete absence of evidence for their own theory of 'intelligent design' — a theory that has produced not a single scientific paper in a peer-reviewed journal — they instead seek 'confirmation' of their views in controversies about evolutionary biology. Their strategy (transparent to all thinking people) is to sow doubt about the fact of evolution simply because scientists do not know every detail about how evolution occurred."
In fact, the Discovery Institute's reputation for quote-mining is apparently spreading in the scientific community. In his response to NCSE's questionnaire, for example, David P. Mindell (coauthor of ), wrote, "I am appalled that the Discovery Institute would find anything in any of my work to support their unscientific views. I am of course familiar with them as a source of misinformation and misunderstanding about nature and propaganda for anti-science education legislation."
Because it cites 44 valuable, if abstruse, contributions to the scientific literature, the Bibliography may at first glance appear scientific itself. But make no mistake: quote-mining is neither scholarship nor research. It is propaganda. What John R. Cole wrote over twenty years ago is still true today: "Instead of searching for quotations, creationists should test their ideas against empirical evidence." Until the staff of the Discovery Institute follows his advice, the Board of Education should not take theirs.
1. From http://www.reviewevolution.com/whatIsIntelligentDesign.php, spotted March 28, 2002.
2. For SEAO's proposals, see http://www.seao.org, spotted March 28, 2002; for the writing committee's objections, see "Curriculum team backs evolution," Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 16, 2002.
3. See "State board studying theories on start of life," Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 12, 2002; see also George W. Gilchrist, "The elusive scientific basis of intelligent design theory," Reports of the National Center for Science Education May/June 1997, vol. 17, no. 3, pp. 14-15.
4. The publications listed in the Bibliography - though not the Discovery Institute's summaries of them - are listed in Appendix A.
5. In the case of publications with multiple authors, NCSE sent a questionnaire to at least one of the authors.
6. Numbers in brackets refer to the numbered entries in the Discovery Institute's Bibliography. Quotations from the authors of the publications are reproduced, with permission, from their responses to NCSE's questionnaire. The questionnaire itself is reproduced in Appendix B. NCSE will send a complete compilation of responses to the questionnaire to state educational officials and members of the press upon request.
7. From http://www.discovery.org/viewDB/index.php3?command=view&id=1127&program=CRSC%20Responses, emphasis in original, spotted March 28, 2002.
8. Stephen C. Meyer, "Teach the controversy on origins," Cincinnati Enquirer, March 30, 2002.
9. Corey S. Goodman and Bridget C. Coughlin, "The evolution of evo-devo biology," Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 2000, vol. 97, issue 9, pp. 4424-4425.
11. Szathmáry's name is consistently misspelled in the Bibliography as Szarthmáry.
12. This is not to deny that these terms occasionally appear in the biological literature. But they have no consistent, well-established, definite meaning there.
13. The Discovery Institute may wish to claim in response that its Senior Fellow Jonathan Wells's book Icons of Evolution (Washington DC: Regnery, 2000) constitutes a contribution to the literature on science education. But the reviews of Icons of Evolution in the scientific journals have been uniformly scathing. For example, Jerry A. Coyne's review in Nature - which, as the Bibliography proclaims, is "one of the top two science journals in the world" - concludes with the ironic comment that "Icons is exactly as even-handed and intellectually honest as one would expect from someone whose 'prayers convinced me that I should devote my life to destroying Darwinism'" (Nature 2001, vol. 410, pp. 745-746; the passage Coyne quotes is from Wells's essay "Darwinism: Why I went for a second Ph.D.", to be found on a Unification Church web site at http://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/ Talks/Wells/DARWIN.htm, spotted March 28, 2002).
14. John R. Cole, "Misquoted scientists respond," Creation/Evolution 1981, vol. 6, pp. 34-44.
15. See, e.g., Henry M. Morris, That Their Words May Be Used Against Them (Green Forest AR: Master Books, 1998).
16. These reviews are Jerry Coyne, "Creationism by stealth," Nature 2001, vol. 410, pp. 745-746; Eugenie C. Scott, "Fatally flawed iconoclasm," Science 2001, vol. 292, pp. 2257-2258; Kevin Padian and Alan Gishlick, "The talented Mr. Wells," The Quarterly Review of Biology 2002; vol. 77.
17. For Coyne's remark, see "Misrepresented scientists speak out," Reports of the National Center for Science Education September-December 2001, vol. 21, nos. 5-6, pp. 14-16; see the same issue, pp. 5-21 passim, for evidence of the Discovery Institute's quote-mining and reactions by the scientists whose views were misrepresented.