CSICon - Speakers

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James Alcock James Alcock is a CSI executive council member, professor of psychology at York University, and author of Parapsychology: Science or Magic? and Science and Supernature.

Elyse Anders Elyse Anders is the bad ass behind the Women Thinking Free Foundation, a skeptical outreach organization focusing on women and women's issues; and the superhero in charge of the Hug Me! I’m Vaccinated campaign, a vaccine advocacy and education project; as well as a podcaster emeritus, Skepchick, writer, and social media activist-extraordinaire who takes on multi-national corporations from her living room. As mother of two, Elyse is heralded as the anti-Jenny McCarthy. She's not the hero you deserve, but she is the hero you need.

Kimball Atwood IV Kimball Atwood IV, MD, is a practicing anesthesiologist in Newton, Massachusetts, and is also board-certified in internal medicine. He is assistant clinical professor at the Tufts University School of Medicine.

Evan Bernstein Evan Bernstein is a cohost of the SGU and managing editor of The Rogues Gallery, the official blog of the Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe.

R. Elisabeth Cornwell Elisabeth Cornwell is an evolutionary psychologist and the executive director of the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science US.

Heina Dadabhoy Heina Dadabhoy spent her childhood as a practicing Muslim who never in her right mind would have believed that she would grow up to be an atheist feminist secular humanist. She has been writing for Skepchick since November 2011.

Kendrick Frazier Kendrick Frazier is editor of the Skeptical Inquirer, a former editor of Science News, and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Debbie Goddard Debbie Goddard is the campus outreach coordinator at the Center for Inquiry and the director of African Americans for Humanism, a program of the Council for Secular Humanism.

David Gorski David Gorski, MD, PhD, is section chief of the Section of Breast Surgery at the Wayne State University School of Medicine and the medical director of the Alexander J. Walt Breast Center at the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute. He serves as the managing editor of the Science-Based Medicine blog.

Harriet Hall Harriet Hall, MD, aka “The SkepDoc,” is a retired family physician who writes prolifically about science, alternative medicine, and quackery; she is a CSI fellow.

Sharon Hill Sharon Hill is a geologist specializing in policy, regulation, and public understanding of science. She writes at idoubtit.wordpress.com about exposing “sciencey-sounding” claims. She also founded the Doubtful News blog (doubtfulnews.com).

George Hrab George Hrab is a singer, songwriter, producer, composer, and heliocentrist. He has written and produced six independent albums, published one book, recorded hundreds of episodes of an award winning podcast, and has even performed for President Clinton. He’s travelled to four continents promoting critical thinking, science, and skepticism through story and song.

Ray Hyman Ray Hyman is professor emeritus of psychology at the University of Oregon. His published research has been in pattern recognition, perception, problem solving, creativity, and related areas of cognition.

Dan Kahan Dan Kahan is the Elizabeth K. Dollard Professor of Law and Professor of Psychology at Yale Law School. He is a member of the Cultural Cognition Project, an interdisciplinary team of scholars who use empirical methods to examine the impact of group values on perceptions of risk and related facts.

Barry Karr Barry Karr is the executive director of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI) and a CSI fellow. He is a member of the management committee of the Center for Inquiry and a Skeptical Inquirer consulting editor.

Scott O. Lilienfeld Scott O. Lilienfeld is professor of psychology at Emory University. He is an editorial board member of the Skeptical Inquirer and editor-in-chief of the Scientific Review of Mental Health Practice.

Ronald A. Lindsay Ronald A. Lindsay, JD, PhD, is president and CEO of the Center for Inquiry and the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. Both as a lawyer and a philosopher, he has worked on issues involving the application of science to public policy.

Richard Lippa Richard Lippa is professor of psychology at California State University, Fullerton, and author of Gender, Nature, and Nurture (2002).

Elizabeth Loftus Elizabeth Loftus, PhD, is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Psychology and Social Behavior, the Department of Criminology, Law, and Society, and the Department of Cognitive Sciences, and a fellow of the Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory at the University of California, Irvine.

Sara E. Mayhew Sara E. Mayhew is a writer and illustrator who the prestigious Applied Arts magazine called “young blood commanding our attention.” Her work has been published by Owl Kids and Scholastic.

Chris Mooney Chris Mooney is a science and political journalist and commentator and is the author of three books, including the New York Times best-selling The Republican War on Science. He is also a host of CFI’s Point of Inquiry podcast.

David Morrison David Morrison is a NASA senior scientist and the director of the Carl Sagan Center for the Study of the Origin of Life, which is part of the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California. In 2005, he received the Carl Sagan Medal for Excellence in Public Communication in Planetary Science.

PZ Myers PZ Myers is the author of Pharyngula, the most heavily-trafficked science blog online. He is currently an associate professor of biology at the University of Minnesota, Morris. He has published numerous research papers in Nature and other notable scientific journals.

Joe Nickell Joe Nickell is CSI’s senior research fellow and the world’s only full-time, professionally trained (as stage magician, private detective, and scholar) paranormal investigator. His latest book is The Science of Ghosts.

Steven Novella Steven Novella is the director of General Neurology at Yale University School of Medicine. He is also the editor of Science-Based Medicine, a blog dedicated to exploring issues of science in medicine.

Bob Novella Bob Novella is a cohost of the Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe and a cofounder and vice president of the New England Skeptical Society.

Jay Novella Jay Novella is a cohost of the SGU and serves as Director of Marketing and Technology for SGU Productions.

Anthony Pratkanis Anthony Pratkanis is a major contributor to the science of social influence, professor of psychology at the University of California, and a CSI fellow. His research has investigated such topics as groupthink, subliminal persuasion, economic fraud, and a variety of influence tactics. He teaches a popular course on the Social Psychology of Flimflam in which he amazes students with his psychic abilities as “Professor Pratkanis – Master of the Noosphere.”

Massimo Polidoro Massimo Polidoro is an internationally-recognized "mystery detective". A journalist and writer, he began his career as an apprentice of James Randi and is the co-founder and head of the Italian skeptics group CICAP. He is the first professor of Anomalistic Psychology in Italy, at the University of Milano, and the author of over thirty books. Among his works in English are: Final Séance, on the strange friendship between Houdini and Conan Doyle, and Secrets of the Psychics, on his investigations among psychics and mediums. He is a TV personality in Italy, where he co-hosts Eva, a pop science program for Rai, and his latest international series was Legend Detectives for Discovery Channel. He is also a Research Fellow for CSI and a longtime columnist for its magazine, the Skeptical Inquirer. His website: www.massimopolidoro.com. Twitter: @massimopolidoro

Benjamin Radford Benjamin Radford is a research fellow for the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, deputy editor of the Skeptical Inquirer, and the author of five books, including his most recent, Tracking the Chupacabra.

Jon Ronson Jon Ronson is a writer and documentary filmmaker. His books, Them: Adventures with Extremists, The Men Who Stare At Goats, and The Psychopath Test were all international best sellers. He’s a regular contributor to the PRI show This American Life.

Amy Davis Roth Amy Davis Roth (Surly Amy) is a professional artist and creator of Surly-Ramics. Her designer jewelry line is inspired by and encourages science, humanism, and critical thinking. Amy is a longtime contributor to the blog Skepchick.org where she writes, among other things, a skeptical advice column called, “Ask Surly Amy.” She is managing editor for Skepchick’s sister site that deals with the intersections among art, science, and skepticism called Mad Art Lab. She loves to add her creative skills to the fight against pseudoscience and ignorance.

Amardeo Sarma Amardeo Sarma is the chairman of the German and European Skeptics Societies (GWUP, or the Society for the Scientific Investigation of Para-Sciences) and the European Council of Skeptical Organizations (ECSO). He is also the deputy general manager at NEC Laboratories Europe.

Eugenie C. Scott Eugenie C. Scott, PhD, is an internationally known expert on the creationism and evolution controversy and is the executive director of the National Center for Science Education. She is the author of Evolution vs. Creationism.

Carol Tavris Carol Tavris is a social psychologist, lecturer, and writer who has been studying the study of gender for many years. She and Carole Wade wrote one of the first interdisciplinary textbooks in women's studies—The Longest War—and Tavris went on to write the bestselling The Mismeasure of Woman: Why women are not the better sex, the inferior sex, or the opposite sex. Her introductory textbooks in psychology, also with Carole Wade, have always featured critical and scientific thinking, and she has long been a fellow of CSI. Her latest popular book, with Elliot Aronson, is Mistakes were made (but not by ME): Why we justify foolish beliefs, bad decisions, and hurtful acts. Their book has become something of a touchstone for the skeptical movement, because it explains why so many people resist evidence that discredits their beliefs—preferring instead to hold on to beliefs and practices that are dangerous or self-deluding.

James Underdown James Underdown has been the executive director of the Center for Inquiry–Los Angeles since 1999. He is founder and chairman of the Independent Investigations Group.

Indre Viskontas Indre Viskontas, PhD, is a host of CFI’s Point of Inquiry podcast and cohosted Miracle Detectives, a documentary series that aired on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN). She received her PhD in cognitive neuroscience from UCLA.

Rebecca Watson Rebecca Watson leads dozens of skeptical writers, artists, and activists on the Skepchick Network. She also cohosts The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe podcast.

Maria C. D'Souza Walters Maria C. D’Souza Walters is a writer for Skepchick.org and Mad Art Lab, and cofounder of the Atlanta Skeptics. She is a skeptical activist who, among other things, works to set up vaccination clinics and fundraisers to coincide with skeptical events. She is a strong believer in making skepticism and skeptical events a part of everyday life. She also sometimes makes short movies with puppets.

Richard Wiseman Richard Wiseman, PhD, is Professor of the Public Understanding of Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire in the United Kingdom. He is a Committee for Skeptical Inquiry fellow and author of many books, including 2011’s Paranormality: Why We See What Isn’t There.

CSI - The Committee for Skeptical Inquiry Skeptical Inquirer - The Magazine for Science and Reason CFI - The Center for Inquiry
©2012 Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. Opinions expressed at this conference are those of the individual speakers and do not necessarily represent the views of CSI or CFI. Program subject to change.