The present project has to be seen as part of an extended one, which was born with the aim to create and operate on a long term basis a new type of European workshop centre for the purpose of advanced training on the predoctoral and postdoctoral level as well as a meeting place for high-level workshops/conferences of experts in a broad field that is in need of a topical and organisational focus.
The topic of this project covers frontiers in non-linear phenomena and complexity from physics to biology. This truly interdisciplinary subject has emerged over the last 30 years mainly from non-equilibrium physics and has spread into chemistry, material sciences, applied mathematics, engineering, geo- and astrophysics, biology and medicine. It was fuelled in particular by progress in mathematical techniques and unprecedented increase in computer power. The latter had strong impact both on the experimental side, where computer control and data handling opened novel pathways, and on the theoretical side, where complex systems described in particular by non-linear partial differential equations, but also by discrete systems (coupled-map lattices, cellular automata), became much more tractable. Guided by results from computer studies also analytic-mathematical methods, which give rise to much more general insight, developed rapidly. It is indeed one of the characteristics of the field that many methods, in particular experimental and theoretical, come together and progress in strong interaction.
These topics are pluridisciplinary and should attract scientists with a variety of background education. The envisaged project represents an organic
fusion of teaching and research, usually by combining a series of dual events of summer schools and workshops.