Evolution: random or predictable?

Evolution Festival, Media bulletins

Evolution shows an eerie predictability, according to Professor Simon Conway Morris. In a series of lectures, he will argue that evolution is not as uncertain as it might seem.

Simon Conway Morris, a professor in Cambridge University’s department of earth sciences, is an accomplished scientist, a committed Christian and a gifted communicator. First applauded for his work on the fossils of the Burgess shale, he continues to research early life on Earth. He has made significant contributions to discussions on the philosophical implications of evolution and actively debates the relationship between religion and science.

His book “Life’s Solution: Inevitable Humans in a Lonely Universe” throws doubt on a number of widely-held beliefs about evolution. He suggests that the idea of evolution as an open-ended, random process is flawed and argues that humans are the inevitable result of convergent evolutionary processes.

Simon Conway Morris will be giving the keynote lecture on Evolution: The Royal Road to Consciousness at the ISCAST (Institute for the Study of Christianity in an Age of Science and Technology) conference COSAC 2009 which will be held at the Geelong Conference Centre from 18-20 September. “Christianity and the Origin of Species” is the theme for the conference.

He will also be giving a series of public lectures in Tasmania, Melbourne and Sydney.

In his lecture Darwin’s Compass: How Evolution Discovers the Song of Creation, Simon Conway Morris will argue that evolution, apparently driven by random mutations and adaptations, is not as uncertain as it might seem. Constrained by a limited number of possible outcomes it is, in fact, predictable like any other science.


Date: Wednesday 16 September 2009 at 7.30pm

Venue: Stanley Burbury Theatre at the University of Tasmania.


Date: Thursday 17 September 2009 at 8.00pm

Venue: Glen Waverley Anglican Church, 800 Waverley Road, Glen Waverley

Cost: $15 (or $12 concession for ISCAST members, pensioners and students).

Date: 18-20 September 2009

Venue: Geelong Conference Centre as part of the 2009 ISCAST Conference.

Date: Monday 21 September 2009 at 7.30 pm

Venue: Wesley Centre, 220 Pitt St, Sydney

Cost (on entry): $20 (or $15 concession for pensioners or students)

Simon Conway is a guest of ISCAST. More details at www.iscast.org

For more information about public events that celebrate evolution and Darwin visit the website: www.evolutionaustralia.org.au