CfP: The Second Law of Thermodynamics (LMU Munich, September 1-2, 2017)

Submitted by Erik Curiel (MCMP, LMU Munich).

The Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy invites abstracts for the following event:

The Second Law of Thermodynamics

MCMP, LMU Munich

September 1-2, 2017

The attempt to understand the Second Law of thermodynamics occupies a central role in the foundations of physics: not only is it of great importance in its own right, but it also ramifies into a host of other problems of fundamental physical and philosophical import, from the arrow of time and the nature of spacetime to issues of probability, causality, predictability, and determinism, and even to the nature of memory and agency. This will be the first major conference since the 1950s to address all foundational issues associated with the Second Law, and to try to examine how they all bear on each other. Invited physicists and philosophers will be chosen to represent issues pertaining to the Second Law from many different fields in physics and philosophy (classical thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, quantum field theory, gravity), in an attempt to foster a dialogue among those addressing problems associated with the Second Law in the different fields. Such a gathering will spur new, innovative approaches to the problem, as well as connecting and invigorating work on existing approaches. It will also provide young researchers with a comprehensive introduction to the state of the art of this central field of research, and established researchers with a comprehensive overview.

Call for abstracts

We invite the submission of paper abstracts for the conference.
Abstracts should include a title, a brief abstract (up to 200 words), and a full abstract (up to 1000 words), blinded for peer review. They should be PDF files, submitted to the conference’s EasyChair account. We will select 4 submissions for presentation at the conference.

We plan to publish the proceedings of the conference as a special issue of a leading journal (e.g., Foundations of Physics).
Depending on the funding situation, it is likely that the conference organizers will be able to partly subsidize the traveling and accommodation costs for those whose submitted abstracts are accepted, or even to cover all costs. This will be determined by the end of the summer.

We are committed to fostering diversity and equality in our programs. Submissions from underrepresented groups are particularly welcome. The conference will be organized and run under the MCMP’s code of conduct.


Please send registration requests by 15 Aug 2017 to the co-organizer Neil Dewar. The email should have the subject: “register second law” and contain your name and affiliation as you would like it to appear on your conference name-tag. Also please indicate whether you plan to attend the conference dinner (01 Sep, 2017). The fees for the conference and dinner are as follows.

Senior researchers with permanent positions (associate and full professors, etc.): conference fee EUR 40
Junior researchers (assistant professors, post-docs, etc.): conference fee EUR 25
Students (masters, doctoral, etc.): no conference fee

Cost for conference dinner (for everyone): EUR 30

Dates and Deadines

Deadlines for Submission: May 1 2017
Date of Notification: May 31 2017
Registration Deadline: August 15 2017


Erik Curiel
Neil Dewar