During the last two decades the Science of Nonlinear and Chaotic
Dynamics has had a spectacular development. Many important ideas
and tools appeared in the literature, helping in a deeper
understanding of the role of Order and Chaos in Dynamical Systems.
One of the most fruitful applications of these ideas and tools has
been in the field of Dynamical Astronomy, namely in Galactic
Dynamics and in the Dynamics of the Solar System. On the other
hand recent observational studies of galaxies and of exosolar
systems have come to the point of detecting order and chaos in
these systems. For this reason the members of the Research Center
of Astronomy of the Academy of Athens decided to organize an
International Workshop on this subject. This Workshop "Galaxies
and Chaos. Theory and Observations" was held in Athens in
September 16-19, 2002.
A total number of 77 participants from 21 countries from all over
the World attended the Workshop, namely from Europe, U.S.A,
Australia, Japan and Chile. There were 45 talks (23 of them
invited talks) and 10 posters. The Workshop brought together the
experience of people working on Galactic Dynamics and Galaxy
Formation (theory and observations) with the experience of people
working on Nonlinear Dynamical Systems.
The talks summarized the most recent developments in both
theoretical and observational aspects in Galactic Dynamics with
emphasis on the role of chaos in galaxies. There were also a
number of interesting papers on some most up-to-date problems of
Celestial Mechanics and an invited talk on chaos in earthquake
The Scientific Organizing Committee was composed of : G.
Contopoulos (chairman, Academy of Athens), E. Athanassoula
(Observatoire de Marseille, France), A. Bosma (Observatoire de
Marseille, France), H. Dejonghe (University of Ghent, Belgium), A.
Fridman (Russian Academy of Sciences), P. Grosbol (ESO,
Germany), P.O. Lindblad (Stockholm Observatory, Sweden), D.
Lynden-Bell (University of Cambridge, UK), D. Merritt (Rutgers
University, USA), and N. Voglis (Academy of Athens). The Local
Organizing Committee was composed of : N. Voglis (chairman), H.
Dara, Ch. Efthymiopoulos, P. Patsis, V. Tritakis and M. Zoulias.
The Academy of Athens covered a considerable part of the expenses
of the Workshop. But we are grateful also to several other
institutions and persons, namely: The University of Athens, in
particular the vice-rector Dr. G. Dermitzakis, that provided both
financial and substructure support, the Hellenic Ministry of
Culture, the A.G. Leventis Foundation, the City of Athens, the
Siemens S.A. in Athens, the European Physical Society and private
With their help we could in particular organize an archeological
tour of Athens, a closing dinner at the terrace of a hotel in the
center of the city, and provide free hotel rooms and free lunches
to many participants. We thank heartily all of them.