Welcome to Robin Collins' Fine-Tuning Website

(This site has just been created as of 9/15/03 and is still under major construction.)


I. My Own Papers

1. Critique of Victor Stenger --'"Stenger's Fallacies" or "The Fine-Tuning Evidence is Convincing" (This is an expanded version of my essay coming out in the Oxford Dialogue Series in Christian Theism.  Stenger was my interlocutor.)

2. Modern Cosmology in Philosophical and Theological Perspective: Three Methodological Approaches; Alternative Title: The Fine-tuning of the Cosmos: A Fresh Look at its Implications.[Forthcoming work].
In this contribution, I first offer a new, and I believe powerful, objection to the multiverse hypothesis, and then argue that single-universe naturalism involves as much of a faith commitment as theism, even apart from the fine-tuning evidence.  I then argue that not only does the fine-tuning evidence tip the balance in favor of theism but theism accounts much better for the actual methodology of science.

 [In around 50,000 words, this paper provides a scientifically and philosophically careful treatment of the fine-tuning argument for divine creation of the cosmos, addressing most of the major criticisms of the argument in the process. The final version of this paper is under the title "The Teleological Argument: An Exploration of the Fine-tuning of the Cosmos" and  appears in the Blackwell Reader to Natural Theology, edited by William Lane Craig and J.P. Moreland, Oxford UK: 2009.  This is not the final version, but an early version before it went through the editing process at Blackwell.] 

4. “God, Design, and Fine-Tuning.” Presents the basic fine-tuning argument along with responses to some of the frequently raised objections to the argument. It is an updated version of an  article written for an undergraduate textbook in philosophy of religion. (The version is an updated version of the penultimate copy of the paper before final proofreading.)

  5. “The Argument from Design and the Many-Worlds Hypothesis.”
  [This paper presents a more detailed answer to the so-called many-universes, multiverse, or many-domains explanation of the fine-tuning. Essentially it argues that even if some sort of "multiple-universes generator" exists, this would not significantly undercut the argument for design based on cosmic fine-tuning and the beauty and elegance of the laws of nature.]

6. “A Theistic Perspective on the Multiverse Hypothesis.”   [This paper was presented at Stanford University in March 27-29 for the "Universe or Multiverse?" Symposium sponsored by the John Templeton Foundation. It presents a theistic perspective on the multiple universe hypothesis.]

7. "How To Rigorously Define Fine-Tuning."  . This paper presents a way of rigorously defining fine-tuning. It answers the McGrew and Vestruf objection that there is no adequate definition of fine-tuning. Mainly of interest to professional philosophers.  It is not yet completely edited, so there are some gaps and various typos in it.]

8. "The Evidence of Fine-tuning," Near-final version of article:  Collins, Robin. (January, 2003). "The Evidence for Fine-tuning." In God and Design: The Teleological Argument and Modern Science, Neil Manson (ed.), Routledge. [This article carefully explicating" six good cases" of fine-tuning, and showing the problematic character of some prominent cases of purported fine-tuning.]

II. Other Recommended Books and Articles

Barrow, John and Tipler, Frank. The Anthropic Cosmological Principle. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986. [Classic book dealing with almost all aspects of the anthropic principle, with extensive calculations regarding fine-tuning.]

Carr, B. J., and Rees, M. J. (April, 1979). "The Anthropic Cosmological Principle and the Structure of the Physical World." Nature, Vol. 278, 12 April 1979, pp. 605 -612. [This is the first major article extensively discussing the way in which the constants of nature are set just right for life to occur.]

John Leslie, Universes. New York: Routledge, 1989. [This is one of the most extensive discussions of fine-tuning and the multiple universe hypothesis in print, by one of the leading philosophers who has addressed this subject. The discussion of the multiverse hypothesis is a little dated, however.]

Leslie, John. "How to Draw Conclusions From a Fine-Tuned Cosmos." In Robert Russell, et. al., eds., Physics, Philosophy and Theology: A Common Quest for Understanding. Vatican City State: Vatican Observatory Press, pp. 297-312, 1988. [A short presentation of the fine-tuning argument for design along with a consideration of the multiuniverse explanation.]

Rees, Martin. Just Six Numbers: The Deep Forces that Shape the Universe, New York, NY: Basic Books, 2000. [A book by one of England's leading astrophysicist presenting how six different numbers determine the basic structure of the universe along with how these numbers have to be just right in order for life to exist.]

God and Design: The Teleological Argument and Modern Science, Neil Manson (ed.), Routledge, 2003. [This book provides series of articles both for and against the argument from design as it occurs in physics and cosmology and in biology. The articles are written by leading proponents and skeptics of the design argument in each domain.]

Denton, Michael. (1998). Nature's Destiny: How the Laws of Biology Reveal Purpose in the Universe, New York, NY: The Free Press. [This book that provides a good presentation of the connection between cosmic fine-tuning and biochemistry. Specifically, it argues in detail that such things as the basic chemical elements that occur in nature have just the right features for complex life to develop.]

III. Articles By Skeptics

IV. Links to Other Websites


V. Replies to Skeptics

VI. Frequently Asked Questions