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About IDEA Center

IDEA Center FAQ

IDEA Center FAQ (Answers to Frequently Asked Questions) Thanks for visiting our FAQ page. Below are answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the IDEA Center. This page provides information about the IDEA Center only: it does not deal with the theory of intelligent design itself. To see our Intelligent Design FAQs, please click here. If you would like any information, please also feel free to e-mail us at "info@ideacenter.org."

What is the IDEA Center?

The Intelligent Design and Evolution Awareness (IDEA) Center is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization, formed in 2001, dedicated to serving as a resource for those interested in the debate over intelligent design, aimed at promoting intelligent design theory and fostering good - spirited discussion and a better understanding of the intelligent design and creation - evolution issue among students, educators, churches, and others who are interested.

What exactly does the Center do?

The IDEA Center's primary purpose is to encourage intellectually honest consideration of the scientific theory of intelligent design by helping students found chapters of "IDEA Clubs" at high schools and universities where they can discuss origins issues with their fellow students in a friendly and open atmosphere. To date, over 25 chapters have been started by students and teachers around the United States and the world. Please see our IDEA Club Student Chapters page for details.

The IDEA Center also hosts classes, seminars, conferences, and maintains a website to promote intelligent design theory and promote the facts about the creation - evolution issue. The Center's primary purpose is to promote the scientific theory of intelligent design, and foster friendly discussion and dialogue among individuals of varying beliefs and backgrounds. We aim to promote a better understanding of these issues primarily to students but also to internet users, churches, community institutions, and educational institutions.

Who runs the IDEA Center?

The Center is run by a small group of staff members, most of which are based in San Diego, California, and the Executive Director, who lives in the Washington D.C. area (see the Administration Team page). We also have a distinguished Board of Directors who make policy decisions for the Center. Finally, our Advisory Board, consists of eminent scholars, authors, and leaders of the intelligent design movement and helps advise the Center when needed.

Where is the Center located?

The IDEA Center does not have an official geographical location at this time, although its administrators base the Center in San Diego, California. The official location of the Center is "virtual" (on the internet), but it does have a mailing address:

IDEA Center
P.O. Box 3245
Seattle, WA 98114

IDEA's present "virtual location" is preferable since we work with students all around the U.S., and our vision is eventually to place staff all over the United States in order to better serve the needs of students. Please see our Contact Information Page for more details.

Does the Center have a religious affiliation?

Intelligent design is not a religious theory and the IDEA Center promotes intelligent design as a scientific theory. Therefore, the IDEA Center does not have an official religious affiliation. The IDEA Center believes that it is important to be upfront about one's bias, and thus it is important to state that the founders of the IDEA Center are Christians. At the heart of our advocacy is to promote intelligent design theory purely on its scientific merits and we believe that in the investigation of intelligent design the identity of the designer is completely separate from the scientific theory of intelligent design, since a scientific theory cannot specify the identity of the designer based upon the empirical data or the scientific method alone, and is not dependent upon religious premises. Please see our About the IDEA's Religious and Scientific affiliations and Why Intelligent Design Theory Is Not Religion page for more information.

Who is on the IDEA Center Advisory Board and what is its purpose?

The IDEA Center Advisory Board consists of a number of scholars, authors, and scientists, from a wide range of disciplines, who have a pro-intelligent design perspective in their academic work. Their purpose is to advise the IDEA Center in its endeavors as they see fit or whenever called upon. We are thankful that our Advisory Board includes: John Baumgardner, Michael Behe, William Dembski, Mark Hartwig, Phillip Johnson, Jay Wesley Richards, Dennis Wagner, and Jonathan Wells.

What are "IDEA Club Student Chapters?"

The IDEA Center itself grew out of a student-run club at UC San Diego called the "IDEA Club." From its inception, a primary focus of the IDEA Center has been to help students start IDEA Club Student Chapters on their own high school and university campuses.

IDEA Clubs are a place where students can learn about and discuss intelligent design and enable a better understanding of origins issues by their fellow students. IDEA Clubs help inform students about the scientific and philosophical issues faced in the controversy by providing accurate information and allowing discussion and dialogue among individuals from different backgrounds. Through this learning, discussion, interaction, and camaraderie, students gain a better understanding of origins issues.

Can donations be made to the IDEA Center?

Yes. The IDEA Center is a 501(c)(3) IRS tax exempt non-profit organization which can accept tax deductible donations from members of the public who support what we do. If you have any questions about supporting us, please e-mail us at "donations@ideacenter.org" or see our donations page.

What's the difference between an "IDEA Club" and the "IDEA Center?"

The "IDEA Center" is a non-profit organization that helps students and community members promote intelligent design theory by starting "IDEA Clubs." "IDEA Clubs" are, therefore, the student-founded or individual-founded organizations that are affiliated with the IDEA Center, and try to promote intelligent design in their local community or school campus. The IDEA Center serves as a "mother-ship" to the IDEA Clubs, helping to provide them with information, resources, support and materials.

What are IDEA Center "Members"?

IDEA Center members are people who have signed up to receive our free semi-annual newsletter and updates about the IDEA Center, intelligent design, and the creation - evolution issue. Becoming a member is free, although you are always welcome to make a donation! If you would like more information about becoming an IDEA Center member, please see our membership information page, e-mail us at "membership@ideacenter.org," or see our online membership / donations form.

Does IDEA take a position on the age of the earth?

The age of the earth is not an issue related to intelligent design theory, the validity of evolutionary theory, or even to to the validity of religions, including Christianity. For this reason, IDEA finds no reason to make any statements about the age of the earth. This does not mean it is not an important question, but it is not one we address.

Therefore, if you are struggling with the question of the age of the earth and are interested in learning more about it, we suggest that you contact authorities who speak from various sides of the question, and come to your own conclusions. IDEA knows of resources that provide information, so please feel free to contact us at "info@ideacenter.org" for help.