KLI Colloquia are informal, public talks that are followed by extensive dissussions. Speakers are KLI fellows or visiting researchers who are interested in presenting their work to an interdisciplinary audience and discussing it in a wider research context. We offer three types of talks:

1. Current Research Talks. KLI fellows or visiting researchers present and discuss their most recent research with the KLI fellows and the Vienna scientific community.

2. Future Research Talks. Visiting researchers present and discuss future projects and ideas togehter with the KLI fellows and the Vienna scientific community.

3. Professional Developmental Talks. Experts about research grants and applications at the Austrian and European levels present career opportunities and strategies to late-PhD and post-doctoral researchers.

  • The presentation language is English.
  • If you are interested in presenting your current or future work at the KLI, please contact the Scientific Director or the Executive Manager.

Event Details

Cooperative Event
Viennese Roots of Theoretical Biology: The Vivarium Centenary
2002-09-26 0:00 - 2002-09-28 0:00
KLI for Evolution and Cognition Research, Altenberg, Austria
Organized by Manfred Laubichler, Gerd B. Müller, and Werner Callebaut
Theoretical biology emerged as a discourse among biologists from a variety of different experimental disciplines and some philosophers and physicians during the early decades of the 20th century. This discourse was centered around the conceptual, epistemological, and methodological foundations of biology as well as the relation of biology to physics and metaphysics (the problem of the autonomy of biology), mathematical modeling of biological processes (such as regulation, differentiation, inheritance, and organic transformation), and the representation of biological knowledge. It engaged many of the foremost biologists of Europe (Germany, The Netherlands, Austria, Russia, and Britain) and, to a lesser extent, the United States. Vienna has traditionally been a fertile ground for discussions related to theoretical biology. Several prominent members of the Vienna Medical School, arguably one of the leading centers of Medicine at the turn of the 20th century, had a strong interest in conceptual problems of biology and medicine; research in experimental and theoretical physics explored problems related to biology; Ernst Mach’s approach to history and philosophy of science was based on an evolutionary (or adaptationist) approach to knowledge. Last but not least, the Vivarium, an initially private Institute for Experimental Biology fostered research into the theoretically relevant problems relating physiology,development and environmental modification. On the year of the 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Vivarium the workshop will explore the historical roots as well as the legacy of theoretical biology in Vienna. It will focus on the history of the Vivarium and investigate the careers and contributions of important figures associated with it (Przibram, Kammerer, Exner, Weiss, von Bertalanffy). But the workshop is also intended to raise larger themes and open up fresh perspectives for theoretical biology in the 21st century. There will be papers that place the Viennese tradition in the larger context of modeling biological processes, explore the history and future perspective of research into the role of the environment in development, and analyze the significance of extra-university settings and research institutes in both the past and present. Finally, today´s role of theoretical biology in integrating the life sciences will be analyzed.