Richard G. Swinburne is an Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of Oxford. Over the last 50 years Swinburne has been a very influential proponent of natural theology, that is, philosophical arguments for the existence of God. His philosophical contributions are primarily in philosophy of religion and philosophy of science. He aroused much discussion with his early work in the philosophy of religion, a trilogy of books consisting of The Coherence of Theism, The Existence of God, and Faith and Reason.
Swinburne received an Open Scholarship to study Classics at Exeter College, Oxford, but in fact graduated with a first class
BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics. Swinburne has held various
professorships through his career in academia. From 1972 to 1985 he
taught at Keele University. During part of this time, he gave the Gifford lectures at Aberdeen from 1982 to 1984, resulting in the book The Evolution of the Soul.
From 1985 until his retirement in 2002 he was Nolloth Professor of the
Philosophy of the Christian Religion at the University of Oxford (his
successor in this chair is Brian Leftow).
Swinburne has been a very active author throughout his career,
producing a major book every two to three years. His books are primarily
very technical works of academic philosophy, but he has written at the
popular level as well. Of the non-technical works, his Is There a God? (1996), summarizing for a non-specialist audience many of his arguments for the existence of God
and plausibility in the belief of that existence, is probably the most
popular, and is available in translation in 22 languages.