The Skeptics Society & Skeptic magazine

Logo - 2005 World Summit on Evolution

I would like to alert e-Skeptic readers to this evolution conference being held in the Galapagos islands at which I shall be speaking as well as co-leading a tour with Frank Sulloway (the week before the conference) of the Galapagos Archipelago, retracing Darwin’s footsteps. –Michael Shermer

World Summit Conference Details

Galapagos Conference: June 9–12, 2005
GAIAS campus, and the Municipal Conference Center

Pre-conference activities will be held throughout Ecuador between January–June 2005, celebrating the “Year of Evolution” in local Ecuadorian schools and at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Cumbayá Campus. The center of activities overlooks the Bay of Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, on the island of San Cristóbal.

For further information, please contact: Tracey Tokuhama, or visit the Summit web site.

World Summit on Evolution:
Defining the context and the topics
for the 21st century


The Universidad San Francisco de Quito (USFQ) is pleased to announce a meeting on Evolution with the broadest thematic focus that the world has seen in recent decades. The four-day meeting for scientists on June 9-12, 2005, will be held on the Galapagos archipelago, the same islands that helped spark Darwin’s revolutionary ideas that changed how we view the Earth and ourselves. Through a series of presentations and discussions, the world’s outstanding leaders in evolution will be brought face-to-face to share their insights on evidence for this theory and to discuss future research horizons.


Evolution is one of the most important paradigms in Science, impacting our very understanding of the world around us. The Galapagos Islands will host the greatest gathering of specialists to revisit the central theme of evolutionary biology.

Goals—The Summit Will:
  1. Unite experts in the distinct branches of evolutionary science to discuss the impact of recent findings of genomics, evolutionary-development and other fields and to think about how to integrate them into the basic concepts of evolution;
  2. Bring together a truly international group of scientists to debate evolution in a culturally and intellectually rich setting;
  3. Discuss contributions and evidence of each branch of evolutionary science;
  4. Rethink where our ideas of evolution have been, where the are now, and to help make the decisions as to where the field of evolutionary science should head in the future;
  5. Publish proceedings of the state-of-the-art understanding of evolution in the 21st century;
  6. Remind the scientific community about the importance of the Galapagos Islands and the discoveries that were born of their abundant resources. This gathering will promote the Galapagos Islands as a dynamic, living laboratory;
  7. Promote Ecuador, its scientists and the country’s educational institutions that work for the promotion of scientific understanding;
  8. Increase cooperation between Ecuadorian universities and their counterparts abroad and celebrate the founding of the GAIAS and further its academic mission;
  9. Bring a state-of-the-art understanding of science to Ecuadorian teachers and their classrooms at all academic levels.

The Universidad San Francisco de Quito (USFQ) established the Galapagos Academic Institute for the Arts and Sciences (GAIAS) in 2002 and is the main sponsor of the event along with private Ecuadorian businesses, research and academic institutions in the United States, and the US National Science Foundation.


The conference will be limited to 150 international participants so that a diverse and qualified assembly will be assured. Leading researchers, theoreticians and graduate students in evolutionary biology will attend:

  • Unite experts in the distinct branches of evolutionary science to discuss the impact of recent findings of genomics, evolutionary-development and other fields and to think about how to integrate them into the basic concepts of evolution;
  • 150 international scientists
  • 50 national scientists
  • 24 graduate students
  • 5,000 Ecuadorian secondary students who will participate in debate, discussion and exchange of ideas in workshops held at the University during the pre-conference series
  • Members of the Press

The estimated cost of The World Summit on Evolution is $800, plus airfare and the Registration fee of $150 for participants and $50 for students.

Columbia U. Miracle Research Scandal

Our friend and colleague Bruce Flamm, who has single-handedly exposed the farcical prayer-pregnancy study, sends this very good announcement:

Dear Friends and Colleagues:

An event has just taken place that almost makes me believe in miracles. After three years of ignoring all my emails, letters and phone calls, the JRM actually published my most recent letter. They cut it down and weakened it but most of the main points survived their careful editing. The letter can be read online.

Note that the table of contents for the January 2005 issue of JRM ( reveals that Dr. Devoe has written another Note from the Editor-in-Chief. I do not know if this addresses the Columbia ‘miracle’ study since I don’t have my hard copy of the January issue of JRM yet and I can’t access his ‘note’ online.

Bruce L. Flamm, MD
[email protected]

Christ on the Half Shell

Oyster shell resembling the face of Jesus.

A bar manager in Switzerland has announced plans to sell an oyster shell resembling the face of Jesus Christ, according to local media… The Italian said he had found the shell, whose contents have since been eaten, in a batch two years ago… The oyster stuck to his hand as if God was calling him, he said… View the story at

Amazing Meeting 3
Reported in the Las Vegas Journal

Linda Shallenberger, Adminstrative Director of the James Randi Educational Foundation, sends us this link to the Las Vegas Journal describing last weekend’s Amazing Meeting 3, presented in association with the Skeptics Society. We can’t thank Linda enough for the great job she did making TAM 3 such a success.


Get eSkeptic

Be in the know!

Subscribe to eSkeptic: our free email newsletter and get great podcasts, videos, reviews and articles from Skeptic magazine, announcements, and more in your inbox twice a week. It’s free. We never share your address. Unsubscribe any time.

Sign me up!

Detecting Baloney

Baloney Detection Kit Sandwich (Infographic) by Deanna and Skylar (High Tech High Media Arts, San Diego, CA)

The Baloney Detection Kit Sandwich (Infographic)

For a class project, a pair of 11th grade physics students created the infographic shown below, inspired by Michael Shermer’s Baloney Detection Kit: a 16-page booklet designed to hone your critical thinking skills.

FREE PDF Download

Wisdom of Harriet Hall

Top 10 Things to Know About Alternative Medicine

Harriet Hall M.D. discusses: alternative versus conventional medicine, flu fear mongering, chiropractic, vaccines and autism, placebo effect, diet, homeopathy, acupuncture, “natural remedies,” and detoxification.

FREE Video Series

Science Based Medicine vs. Alternative Medicine

Science Based Medicine vs. Alternative Medicine

Understanding the difference could save your life! In this superb 10-part video lecture series, Harriet Hall M.D., contrasts science-based medicine with so-called “complementary and alternative” methods.

FREE PDF Download

The Top 10 Weirdest Things

The Top Ten Strangest Beliefs

Michael Shermer has compiled a list of the top 10 strangest beliefs that he has encountered in his quarter century as a professional skeptic.

FREE PDF Download

Reality Check: How Science Deniers Threaten Our Future (paperback cover)

Who believes them? Why? How can you tell if they’re true?

What is a conspiracy theory, why do people believe in them, and can you tell the difference between a true conspiracy and a false one?

FREE PDF Download

The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

Mind altering experiences are one of the foundations of widespread belief in the paranormal. But as skeptics are well aware, accepting them as reality can be dangerous…

FREE PDF Download

Top 10 Myths About Evolution

Top 10 Myths About Evolution (and how we know it really happened)

If humans came from apes, why aren’t apes evolving into humans? Find out in this pamphlet!

FREE PDF Download

Learn to be a Psychic in 10 Easy Lessons

Learn to do Psychic “Cold Reading” in 10
Easy Lessons

Psychic readings and fortunetelling are an ancient art — a combination of acting and psychological manipulation.

Copyright © 1992–2022. All rights reserved. | P.O. Box 338 | Altadena, CA, 91001 | 1-626-794-3119. The Skeptics Society is a non-profit, member-supported 501(c)(3) organization (ID # 95-4550781) whose mission is to promote science & reason. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. Privacy Policy.