The Pew Research Center recently conducted a study of scientists and their religious beliefs. Some of the results were expected and some were a bit surprising.
Whereas most Americans (83%) profess a belief in God, just a third (33%) of scientists say they hold such a belief. There's nothing unexpected there since those figures have been around for a while. What was a surprise, though, was the finding that younger scientists are substantially more likely than their older counterparts to say they believe in God. Forty two percent of scientists (or students studying to be scientists) between the ages of 18 and 34 claim to be theists, but only 28% of those over 65 make that claim.
I don't know what this portends for the future of theistic belief among the nation's scholars, but I would like to see if these numbers are similar across other disciplines. Assuming these survey results accurately reflect the state of theistic belief among contemporary scientists, I'd also like to know what's happening in the culture that's responsible for the disparity between the younger generation of scientists and their elders. Any ideas?RLC