The Science Network

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The Science Network
The Science Network logo.png
Founded 2004
Founder(s) Roger Bingham and Terrence Sejnowski
  • La Jolla, CA, United States
Key people Roger Bingham, co-founder and director
Terrence Sejnowski, advisory board chair
Area served Global
Method(s) Video sharing
Motto More programs, more candles, more light.

The Science Network (TSN) is a non-profit, web-based organization featuring videos of scientific lectures and conversations with prominent scientists.

Initially conceived in 2003 as a cable science network by Roger Bingham and Terry Sejnowski,[1][2] The Science Network became a web-based video site now featuring nearly a thousand videos[3] of lectures from scientific meetings and long form one-on-one conversations with prominent scientists and communicators of science, including Neil deGrasse Tyson, V.S. Ramachandran, Helen S. Mayberg, and Barbara Landau, on topics including education, aging, neuroscience, and stem cells. The Science Network also sponsors and co-sponsors scientific forums and meetings. The first event sponsored by TSN was a site conference on stem cells in 2004.[4]

Beyond Belief[edit]

TSN's signature series Beyond Belief is an annual meeting which brings together a community of scientists, philosophers, scholars from the humanities, and social commentators. Speakers at these meetings have included Steven Weinberg, Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Harry Kroto, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and Stuart Kauffman.

2006: Science, Religion, Reason and Survival[edit]

Beyond Belief: Science, Religion, Reason and Survival, the first of The Science Network's annual Beyond Belief symposia, held from November 5 to November 7, 2006, was described by the New York Times, as "a free-for-all on science and religion," which seemed at times like "the founding convention for a political party built on a single plank: in a world dangerously charged with ideology, science needs to take on an evangelical role, vying with religion as teller of the greatest story ever told." According to participant Melvin Konner, however, the event came to resemble a "den of vipers” debating the issue, "Should we bash religion with a crowbar or only with a baseball bat?”[5]

NewScientist summed up the topics to be discussed as a list of three questions:[6]

  • Can science help us create a new rational narrative as poetic and powerful as those that have traditionally sustained societies?
  • Can we treat religion as a natural phenomenon?
  • Can we be good without God? And if not God, then what?

Speakers included physicists Steven Weinberg, Lawrence Krauss, author Sam Harris, biologist Joan Roughgarden, and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson.[5]

2007: Enlightenment 2.0[edit]

Beyond Belief: Enlightenment 2.0 was the second annual symposium and was held from 31 October to 2 November 2007 at the Frederic de Hoffmann Auditorium of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.[7]

2008: Candles in the Dark[edit]

Beyond Belief: Candles in the Dark was the third annual Beyond Belief symposium. This event was organized by The Science Network and held from 3 October to 6 October 2008 in La Jolla, CA.[8]


  1. ^ Wired: Are You Ready for Some Science? [1] (21 May 2009)
  2. ^ Michael, 2003 [2]
  3. ^ TSN Search [3]
  4. ^ Stem Cells: Science, Ethics and Politics at the Crossroads [4] (21 May 2009)
  5. ^ a b A Free-for-All on Science and Religion," George Johnson, New York Times, Section F, Page 1, November 21, 2006
  6. ^ Michael Brooks and Helen Phillips, NewScientist, November 20, 2006
  7. ^ "2007 Official Website". The Science Network. Retrieved 2009-07-09. 
  8. ^ "2008 Official Website". The Science Network. Retrieved 2009-07-09.