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International Symposium on

Life in the Universe 2019

Big History, SETI and the Future of Humankind

Current Program

Milan (Milano), Italy,

July 15th – 16th, 2019,

with an Excursion to San Marino, July 17th – 18th, 2019.

INAF – IASF Milano,

Via A. Corti 12,

I-20133 Milano,

Italy

Deadline for abstract submission:

July 12, 2019

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Symposium begins in:

July 15th, 2019

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It is a pleasure to invite you to Milan (Milano, Italy) to our first Symposium on LIFE IN THE UNIVERSE: Big History, SETI and the Future of Humankind.

The Symposium is organized jointly by some members of the international SETI community and the International Big History Association (IBHA). It will take place in Milan (Milano, Italy) on July 15th – 16th, 2019, with an additional visit to the Republic of San Marino on July 17th and 18th, 2019. San Marino, known as the Most Serene Republic of San Marino, is an enclaved microstate surrounded by Italy, situated on the Italian Peninsula on the northeastern side of the Apennine Mountains. It was named a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2008.

Big History seeks to understand the integrated history of the Cosmos, Earth, Life, and Humanity, using the best available empirical evidence and scholarly methods. The International Big History Association seeks to promote the unified and interdisciplinary study and teaching of the history of Cosmos, Earth, Life, and Humanity.

SETI, the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence, is the scientific search for radio signals or other signs of life reaching the Earth from other Civilizations possibly existing in the Milky Way (our own galaxy) or elsewhere in other galaxies. It started in 1960 with Project Ozma conducted by Frank D. Drake at the United States National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in West Virginia, and continued with interruptions up to now not only in the United States, but in an increasing number of technologically advanced countries like Russia, France, Italy, UK, Argentina, South Africa, Australia and, most recently, China. No sign of any Extra-Terrestrial (ET) Civilization was found up to now.

The theme of this “Life in the Universe” Symposium will be all facets of finding ET Life in the universe.

Topics of Interest:

Big History Educational approaches for different ages and sector
Local Histories from a Universal point of view
Planetary sciences: the geologic conditions for life and civilizations
Astrobiology: life on other planets
SETI, both Radio and Optical
Sociological, Ecological and Economic Implications on Humankind after the First Contact with Aliens

Guide for authors
The deadline to submit abstracts is July 12, 2019.
To submit your abstract, please see the link at the top of this page.
The abstract must stay within ONE A4 PAGE, single spacing. It must contain:
a) Abstract title.
b) Author’s name and surname.
c) Author’s current affiliation, if any.
d) Author’s e-mail.
e) It must be typed in Times New Roman font 12.0, single spacing.
f) All abstracts must be written with Word, and NOT with Latex, so that they may be printed in the Book of Abstracts to be distributed at the Congress opening.

Important dates:
Deadline for abstract submission: July 12, 2019.

Organizing Committees:

SOC

(Scientific Organizing Committee)

  • Claudio Maccone (Chair) – Italy

  • Nicolò Antonietti – Italy

  • Adalberto Codetta – Italy

  • Adam Frank – USA

  • Mike Garrett – UK

  • Leonid Grinin – Russia

  • Lowell Gustafson – USA

  • Andrey Korotayev – Russia

  • Lucy Laffitte – USA

  • Andrew Siemion – USA

  • Fred Spier – The Netherlands

LOC

(Local Organizing Committee)

  • Claudio Maccone (Chair) – Italy
  • Patrizia Caraveo (INAF-IASF Milan – Italy)
  • Francesco Brigante (Republic of San Marino)

Day-By-Day Calendar

SATURDAY, July 13th: American Participants fly in the evening and overnight to a European “big hub” of their choice, where they land in the following morning, July 14th. From there, anyone of the three Milan airports may be reached:
a) Milan Malpensa airport (code: MXP),
b) or possibly Milan Linate (code: LIN)
c) or Orio al Serio (Bergamo, code: BGY).

Alternatively, Participants might wish to fly directly to Milan Malpensa airport MXP. A train ride from Malpensa MXP airport lasts about an hour (cost: about 20 euros) and takes you directly to Milano Centrale train station, from which the Metro (#2 line, i.e. green line) takes you anywhere in town.

SUNDAY, July 14th: Participants arriving from Russia and the Eastern European Countries may fly directly from Moscow or their home towns to Milan Malpensa (MXP) airport on Sunday 14th, and then reach Milano Centrale station by rail.

The next three nights (nights of July 14-15-16) at a hotel of your choice in Milan.

MONDAY, July 15th: At 8:30: Registration at INAF-IASF in Milan, at the entrance of the large CNR building (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche), located at Via Alfonso Corti 12, Milan. Please have your PASSPORT or IDENTITY CARD (photo id) with you for the Registration. Thanks.

SYMPOSIUM STARTS AT 9:30.

There will be an intermixing of lectures about both Big History and SETI, so that the two communities of Big Historians and SETI professionals will come to know about each other.
Coffee break (15 minutes) at 11:00.

LUNCH at a restaurant or pizza-bar of your choice in Milan: 12:30-14:00. There are plenty of dining places in the vicinity of the Symposium VENUE at Via Alfonso Corti 12: just walk around, please.

SYMPOSIUM continues at 14:00.
Coffee break (15 minutes) at 16:00.
SYMPOSIUM ENDS AT 18:00.
Evening: free.

TUESDAY, July 16th: At 8:30: Registration at INAF-IASF in Milan, at the entrance of the large CNR building (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche), located at Via Alfonso Corti 12, Milan. Please have your PASSPORT or IDENTITY CARD (photo id) with you for the Registration. Thanks.

SYMPOSIUM STARTS AT 9:30.

There will be an intermixing of lectures about both Big History and SETI, so that the two communities of Big Historians and SETI professionals will come to know about each other.
Coffee break (15 minutes) at 11:00.

At 12:30 GROUP PHOTO of all Participants taken in the Conference Lecture Hall.

LUNCH at a restaurant or pizza-bar of your choice in Milan: 12:30-14:00. There are plenty of dining places in the vicinity of the Symposium VENUE at Via Alfonso Corti 12: just walk around, please.

SYMPOSIUM continues at 14:00.
Coffee break (15 minutes) at 16:00.
SYMPOSIUM ENDS AT 18:00.

EVENING: SYMPOSIUM DINNER at 8 pm thru 11 pm at a restaurant in Milan to be specified later. This dinner is graciously offered by the Breakthrough Listen (BL) SETI Program currently conducted by the University of California at Berkeley, United States. Attire: casual.

HOTEL ACCOMMODATION in Milan for the three nights of July 14-15-16

In the map of Milan below you see, near the bottom right edge, the Symposium VENUE located in Via Alfonso Corti 12 and marked as Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Area di…(Milano) . In red are the two Metro stations of Piola (bottom left) and Lambrate (top right), both served by the Linea 2 (Green Line).

All around, the blue pins mark hotels nearby, all at walking distance from the Symposium venue and good for all budgets. The largest blue pin on the center-left is the suggested hotel “Oasi Village”, web site https://www.oasivillagehotel.it/ costing some 200 euros for the three nights of July 14-15-16.

WEDNESDAY, July 17th: At 9:30 OPTIONAL BUS EXCURSION to the Italian SETI facilities at Medicina (near Bologna) and to the Republic of San Marino, lasting two days: July 17th and 18th.

The cost of this excursion to Medicina and San Marino is NOT included in the Symposium Registration Fee and will be about 100 euros excluding the cost of the two nights of July 17 and 18 in San Marino.
a) Visit to the SETI facilities at the Medicina Radio Telescopes (Medicina is a small town in the country about 30 km east of Bologna). History of the SETI activities in Italy (1980s-present), website: http://www.centrovisite.ira.inaf.it/index-en.html. Visit will end about 13:00.
b) Lunch at the “Voli e Sapori” restaurant nearby the radio telescopes, ending at about 14:30. The lunch cost is included in the cost of the Excursion to Medicina and San Marino.
c) In the afternoon, at about 5 pm, our bus reaches San Marino and the hotel(s) that Participants have selected to spend the night of July 17th and possibly more nights, at the Participants discretion.
d) CONVIVIAL DINNER at 7:00 thru 11 pm at “Boschetto” restaurant at Fiorentino (a village within the Republic of San Marino) with a fantastic view of the Adriatic Sea. A bus service will take you there from your San Marino hotel and back, late in the evening. The cost of this Conference Dinner is 40 euros per person, including musical entertainment and transportation to and from the San Marino hotels. This cost of this Convivial Dinner is NOT included in the cost of the Medicina and San Marino Excursion.

THURSDAY, July 18th Free day to visit San Marino. More later about an organized San Marino Tour.

HOTEL ACCOMMODATION in San Marino for the night of July 17th and possibly more nights

Please keep in mind that the town of San Marino is built on the western SLOPES of Mount Titano (at 739 m (2,425 ft) above sea level), while the eastern slopes are “just vertical” and so “dangerous” if you walk “carefree” in between the three medieval towers on its top: beware!

Please wear comfortable shoes all the times in town, and be prepared to climb up and down on foot throughout the city.
To see with your own eyes, please watch the movie https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eSqoEhWd9cM. Now about some hotels in San Marino, with TENTATIVE costs:

1) The suggested hotel for Symposium Participants is the 4-stars Hotel IDesign (four stars), web site:
https://www.hotelsanmarinoidesign.com/en/. Early booking is strongly advised. It is 30 minutes walking distance from the Kursaal (with climbing up), but a free shuttle bus service will be organized just for the Participants. Cost per day: 65 Euros Single Room, 85 Euros Double Room for 2 people only.

2) The smartest hotel in San Marino is possibly Grand Hotel San Marino (GHSM), web site https://www.grandhotel.sm/en/ (four stars). It the summer it may be expensive, but it is at walking distance (about 400 meters) from the Kursaal and you won’t have to climb either up or down: just walk along via Antonio Onofri on your left when you leave the Hotel. Again, early booking is strongly advised. Cost per day: 95 Euros Single Room, 115 Euros Double Room for 2 people only.

3) Less expensive hotels are located around Piazza della Stazione (the former train station in San Marino, dismissed after the bombardments of World War Two). The cost of three-stars hotels is 60 Euros Single Room, 80 Euros Double Room for 2 people only.

4) In conclusion, please carefully select your accommodation well in advance. Thanks.

Registration Fees

1) EARLY BIRDS, i.e. Participants paying their Registration Fee BY SUNDAY, MARCH 31st, 2019, INCLUSIVE:

a) US$ 100 per Participant aged in between 30 and 65 (i.e. Professionals, whatever their job).
b) US$ 50per Accompanying Person.
c) US$ 50Student Fee for participants aged up to 30 inclusive.
d) US$ 50Senior Fee (i.e. people aged 65 inclusive or higher),
e) Italian Amateur astronomers who are registered members of UAI (Unione Astrofili Italiani, site https://www.uai.it/ ) will be granted FREE ENTRANCE to the Conference Hall in Milan on July 15-16, 2019.

2) LATECOMERS, i.e. SINCE MONDAY, APRIL 1st, 2019, INCLUSIVE

f) US$ 150 per Participant aged in between 30 and 65 (i.e. Professionals, whatever their job).
g) US$ 75per Accompanying Person.
h) US$ 75Student Fee for participants aged up to 30 inclusive.
i) US$ 75Senior Fee (i.e. people aged 65 inclusive or higher),
j) Italian Amateur astronomers who are registered members of UAI (Unione Astrofili Italiani, site https://www.uai.it/ ) will be granted FREE ENTRANCE to the Conference Hall in Milan on July 15-16, 2019.