One of our longer-term goals is to raise the level of scholarship in origins studies by developing an active research agenda in addition to the speaking ministry. Our aim is to honour the Creator and serve the wider Christian community by undertaking high-quality, cutting-edge research.
Many exciting opportunities already present themselves – see Paul Garner’s research interests below – but we are looking for additional financial support to allow this area of our work to be expanded. We would like to appoint additional staff, with appropriate scientific qualifications, who can also engage in primary research.
Paul Garner’s current research interests
The depositional environment of the Coconino Sandstone (Permian) and its equivalents, western United States. This is an ongoing collaboration with Dr John Whitmore and Ray Strom, sponsored by the Institute for Creation Research‘s National Creation Science Foundation under its Flood-Activated Sedimentation and Tectonics (FAST) research programme. Although the Coconino Sandstone is conventionally interpreted as a desert dune deposit, a minority of geologists have reinterpreted it as a marine formation. We are undertaking extensive field studies, petrological analyses and reviews of the relevant literature in order to determine the depositional history of this unit.
The taxonomic status of Hyracotherium as a basal equid. This is a collaboration with Dr Todd Wood of the Center for Origins Research and Education at Bryan College, Dayton, Tennessee. A baraminological analysis by Cavanaugh et al (2003) suggested that the Cenozoic horse series is a record of rapid, post-Flood intrabaraminic diversification. However, the relationship of the Hyracotheriinae to the rest of the Equidae remains unresolved (Garner, 2004). Using the methods of statistical baraminology applied to appropriate cladistic datasets, we hope to shed some light on the taxonomic status of Hyracotherium.
Development of criteria for identifying the pre-Flood/Flood and Flood/post-Flood boundaries in the stratigraphic record. This was a joint project with Dr John Whitmore, the results of which were presented at the Sixth International Conference on Creationism in 2008. Our paper outlined multiple criteria that can be used to identify the Flood boundaries and sought to apply them to the stratigraphic record in Wyoming.
Historical Christian perspectives on species and speciation. This was a project to review the range of views expressed by Christian scholars, both pre- and post-Darwin, and from both ‘variationist’ and ‘species stasis’ perspectives. A paper was presented at the February 2009 Genesis Kinds Conference and published in the conference proceedings. A compilation of source material was also published as a monograph in the CORE Issues in Creation series.
Cavanaugh, D.P., Wood, T. C., Wise, K. P. (2003). Fossil Equidae: a monobaraminic, stratomorphic series, pp.143-153 in Ivey, R.L. (editor), Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Creationism. Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh.
Garner, P. (2004). Is the Equidae a holobaramin? (Abstract), p.10 in Sanders, R. (editor), Discovering the Creator: Proceedings of the Third BSG Conference, Occasional Papers of the BSG 4:1-17.