The field of soft condensed matter physics has been steadily growing since the 1970s. The usefulness of its concepts and techniques has been recognized within a broad range of disciplines and technologies as diverse as physics, chemistry, biology, materials science, chemical engineering, biotechnology, nano-science, and biomedical engineering. Scientists working in the field realized right from its infancy the close inter-relations between the physics of synthetic soft matter (e.g., suspensions, electrolytes, polymers, surfactants, liquid crystals) and that of biological matter (e.g., fluid membranes, biopolymers); hence the term Biological and Soft (BioSoft) Matter.
This interaction has further strengthened in recent years, as approaches of soft-matter physics have been applied to various cellular processes, and to the collective dynamics of assemblies of organisms. In parallel, progress in the condensed-matter-physics aspects of soft matter has continued, focusing, in particular, on behaviors far from thermal equilibrium.
At this point in the quick and diverse development of the field, it is a good time to take a broad look at its current challenges, relying on the points of view of some of its most prominent leaders, as well as those of much younger scientists. This is the aim of this conference. We hope that new perspectives and insights emerge, which will nourish biosoft-matter physics in the years to come.
The conference will begin on Sunday, September 18, lunch time, and end on Wednesday, September 21, lunch time. The first day and a half (September 18-19) of the conference will take place at the Weizmann Institute of Science, and the last day and a half (September 20-21) – at Tel Aviv University.
The conference will include a Gala dinner, in which we will celebrate the seminal contributions of Sam Safran and David Andelman to the physics of soft and biological matter.
We look forward to seeing you in Tel Aviv and Rehovot.