Students and staff of Wageningen UR are more sceptical about the theory of evolution than the average Dutch person. Thirty eight percent of those working and studying at Wageningen UR think that life on earth cannot be entirely explained by genetic variation and natural selection.
An earlier large-scale survey of Darwinism in Europe and the US (Science, 2006) established that 22 percent of the Dutch do not believe in evolution theory. That an academic community such as Wageningen should be more sceptical about Darwin than the nation as a whole is remarkable. After all, evolution is a scientific theory, whereas creationism is a religious belief. Half of the Wageningen community seems to be tolerant towards creationists: 48 percent thinks it should be allowed a role in academic education and research.
Next week, on the two hundredth anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth, a special Darwin edition of Resource will look at the position of Darwinism today. Amongst other things, there will be a fuller report on the survey results, interviews and analyses.