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Principles of the Dynamics of Non-Equilibrium Systems

Participation in INI programmes is by invitation only. Anyone wishing to apply to participate in the associated workshop(s) should use the relevant workshop application form.

9th January 2006 to 30th June 2006
Martin Evans University of Edinburgh
Silvio Franz [ICTP, Trieste], [ICTP]
Claude Godreche [CEA-Saclay], [CEA Saclay]
David Mukamel [The Weizmann Institute of Sciences], [Weizmann Institute of Sciences]


Programme theme

The collective behaviour of non-equilibrium systems is poorly understood compared to systems in thermal equilibrium, for which statistical mechanics provides a well established theory. By non-equilibrium systems we refer both to systems held far from thermal equilibrium by an external driving force, and the complementary situation of systems relaxing towards thermal equilibrium. Such systems display a broad range of phenomena, such as phase transitions and slow collective dynamics, which one would like to understand at a deeper level. The study of non-equilibrium systems has arisen in many different contexts such as reaction-diffusion processes, interacting particle systems, driven diffusive systems, and the slow dynamics of glassy systems. In recent years progress has been made towards better understanding these systems. Mathematical tools have been developed and some exact results pertaining to specific systems have been derived. These developments bring us closer to the point where one can address fundamental questions of generality, both of techniques and results. It is anticipated that bringing together the different communities of physicists and mathematicians working in this diverse field will foster the emergence of new directions and outlooks.

The programme will focus on three major areas:

  1. Driven diffusive systems of interacting particles
  2. Coarsening and persistence
  3. Glassy, constrained dynamics and ageing

Although all three of these areas will be explored throughout the programme, it is intended that there will be periods of focus on each, centred around topical workshops.

Final Scientific Report: 
University of Cambridge Research Councils UK
    Clay Mathematics Institute London Mathematical Society NM Rothschild and Sons