The International Society for Science and Religion, based in the United Kingdom, awarded £18,000 to a total of four scholars for essays focused on the work of John Polkinghorne, who was the founding president of the organization.
Polkinghorne is a well known author and a winner of the Templeton Prize for Science and Religion and is a Fellow of the Royal Society. A reverend, Polkinghorne earned a Ph.D. at Trinity College Cambridge and studied under Paul Dirac with a focus on particle physics in the 1950s. Becoming a priest in the Church of England, he later returned to academia and was president of Queens’ College in Cambridge and authored a number of books on religion and science.
Sharing the first prize and wining £6,000 each in the ISSR contest are Jungheyung Kim for his article, “Christian Hope in Dialogue With Natural Theology: Polkinghorne’s Incorporation of Bottom-Up Thinking Into Eschatology” and Daniel Darg for his work on “Cosmic If Statements.”
A joint third prize of £3,000 each went to Russell Manning for “On Revising Natural Theology: John Polkinghorne and the False Modesty of Liberal Theology” and James Watkins for his work on “John Polkinghorne’s Kenotic Theology of Creation and Its Implications for a Theory of Human Creativity.”
An honorable mention was given to a fifth essay by Pat Bennett and her work on “Subtle and Supple: John Polkinghorne’s Engagement With Reality.” She was not awarded a prize but was nevertheless awarded a special commendation by the judges.
ISSR was formed in 2002 and its central aim is the facilitation of dialogue between the two academic disciplines of science and religion, which it views as one of the most important current areas of debate in terms of understanding the nature of humanity.