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Full-Text Articles in Political Science

Religion, Partisanship, And Attitudes Toward Science Policy, Ted G. Jelen, Linda A. Lockett Jan 2014

Religion, Partisanship, And Attitudes Toward Science Policy, Ted G. Jelen, Linda A. Lockett

Political Science Faculty Publications

We examine issues involving science which have been contested in recent public debate. These “contested science” issues include human evolution, stem-cell research, and climate change. We find that few respondents evince consistently skeptical attitudes toward science issues, and that religious variables are generally strong predictors of attitudes toward individual issues. Furthermore, and contrary to analyses of elite discourse, partisan identification is not generally predictive of attitudes toward contested scientific issues.


“It’S Only A Theory": Science, Religion And Attitudes Toward Evolution, Linda A. Lockett Mar 2010

“It’S Only A Theory": Science, Religion And Attitudes Toward Evolution, Linda A. Lockett

Political Science Faculty Publications

The controversy over evolution is a long standing one in American politics. The issue is often depicted as a conflict between science and religion. In this paper the effects of confidence in science and confidence in religion on attitudes toward human evolution are estimated. Bivariate analysis shows that confidence in science is positively related to belief in human evolution, while confidence in religion has a negative relationship. However, these effects become very weak when controls for religious beliefs and affiliation are imposed. Religious variables, rather than attitudes toward science, seem to be the main sources of attitudes toward evolution.