From Science ➤ The appointment of a creationism advocate to lead the agency that oversees Brazil’s graduate study programs has scientists here concerned—yet again—about the encroachment of religion on science and education policy.
|By Herton Escobar|
President Jair Bolsonaro’s administration on Saturday named Benedito Guimarães Aguiar Neto to head the agency, known as CAPES. Aguiar Neto, an electrical engineer by training, previously served as the rector of Mackenzie Presbyterian University (MPU), a private religious school here. It advocates the teaching and study of intelligent design (ID), an outgrowth of biblical creationism that argues that life is too complex to have evolved by Darwinian evolution, and so required an intelligent designer.
Researchers are decrying the move. “It is completely illogical to place someone who has promoted actions contrary to scientific consensus in a position to manage programs that are essentially of scientific training,” said evolutionary biologist Antonio Carlos Marques of the University of São Paulo’s Institute of Biosciences.
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