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Self-organization Reactions on Early Earth: From Pseudofossils to the Origin of Life

20-23 February, 2023

Athens (Greece)


organized by

Electra Kotopoulou

Université Paris-Saclay electra.kotopoulou(at)


& Pamela Knoll

Université libre de Bruxelles



Registration is closed.

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This workshop will gather chemists, geologists, astrobiologists and physicists, to discuss the role of far-from-equilibrium, self-organization reactions in prebiotic chemistry, geochemistry, and planetary science.

The subject of the workshop spans from the synthesis of biologically relevant organics/vesicles/protomembranes and protometabolic reaction networks under geologically plausible conditions, to the formation of abiotic self-organized patterns that hinder the detection of true Life traces in the rock record of Earth and Beyond, including lab-grown and field-based examples.


We would like to discuss recent advances, theoretical and experimental developments as well as the future perspectives of the field of the Origin of Life that could hopefully stimulate new ideas and propel this highly-interdisciplinary field forward. This workshop particularly targets in the mentoring of young scientists upcoming in the field in a thoughtful, engaging, and open manner.

The workshop will gather up to 40 participants in total. Aside to invited speakers, the rest of the participants must be based in a COST-member country.

Interested participants must:

a) register using this form

and b) submit an abstract (200 words max.) & a motivation letter (500 words max) using this form  by the 13th of January.
Selected participants will be notified by the organizers within a few days after the registration deadline (deadline 13th January) and will receive an official invitation from the e-COST (not from the organizers).

Selected participants should accept the e-COST invitation to be eligible for funding.
Do not book tickets/accommodation unless you have received and accepted the official e-COST invitation. In the opposite case you will not be reimbursed.
We kindly remind selected participants that full time attendance is mandatory and that they are expected to actively participate and engage in the workshop activities.



You are invited to participate by:

  1. Conference-style talks presenting recent results in the field. Talks will last 20 minutes followed by 5 minutes for questions.

  2. Conference-style talks giving an overview of a subject or discussing open questions that require elucidation and discussion by the community. Talks will last 30 minutes followed by 10 minutes for questions.

  3. Poster presentations (A0 size, vertical display)

There will also be sessions for open discussions.


We remind you that this is an in-person workshop and there will be no hybrid sessions.




Join us at the iconic city of Athens, Greece, where democracy, science, philosophy and drama flourished centuries ago. Named after Athena, goddess of wisdom and knowledge, Athens has been continuously inhabited since the Neolithic Period and is generally considered as the cradle of Western civilization.

The venue of the workshop will be the “Alkis Argyriadis” amphitheater of the main building of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, at 30 Panepistimiou St. (Propylaia), Athens city center, next to the ‘Panepistimio’ metro station (line 2, red). 


Programme & Social activities

The start time will be 09:30 on Monday 20th of February, and the end time will be 16.00 afternoon on Thursday the 23rd of February, Eastern European Time. More information about the programme to be announced soon.

We will have coffee breaks each morning and afternoon and 1h lunch break (lunch will not be provided by us, but there are plenty food options around). On Tuesday 21st of February we will have some free time to visit the new Acropolis Museum, situated just below the Acropolis hill, while on Wednesday 22nd we will have dinner altogether at the famous Plaka district (you will need to confirm your participation via the poll).



Travel reimbursement rules

Concerning the travel cost & daily allowance reimbursement please be mindful of the following:

  1. Create an account in  introducing your data, affiliation and IBAN bank details

  2. Accept the invitation sent out by COST. Please do this asap if you haven’t done so, because the invitation expires after 2 weeks.

  3. When you have accepted the official invitation email from COST, don’t wait any longer to book your tickets and please keep the receipt and tickets/boarding passes. To be reimbursed you will need to upload them in the cost platform once you are back from the workshop. Important note: Participants coming from non-EU countries have an upper limit of 1500 euros of total travel cost. If your travel cost is above that amount you will have to cover the difference yourself.

  4. The daily allowance is 193 euros/full day, aiming to cover accommodation and food expenses. You will not need to present receipts for these expenses to receive the reimbursement.  

  5. Make sure to sign the attendance list that will be handed out daily during the workshop.


For futher information or questions about the process of obtaining reimbursement for your travel and other expenses please contact chemobrionics(at)



Athens is a very popular tourist destination, so, for your accommodation you can choose between AirBnBs, hotels, “Bed and Breakfast” guesthouses and hostels, many of which are conveniently located in Syntagma, Monastiraki, Kolonaki and Plaka areas around the workshop venue. 

We recommend you book your accommodation as soon as possible. Please notice that we do not offer hotel reservation service.


Invited speakers

Braun, Dieter

- Ludwig-Maximilians University, DE

Cleaves, H. James


Cosmidis, Julie

- University of Oxford, UK

Danger, Greg

- Aix-Marseille Université – CNRS, FR

López-García, Purificación

-  CNRS -UPSaclay, FR

McMahon, Sean

- University of Edinburgh, UK

Moran, Joseph

- CNRS-University of Strasbourg, FR

Mutschler, Hannes

– TU Dortmund University, DE

Nomikou, Paraskevi

- University of Athens, GR

Van Zuillen, Mark


Dilip K. Kondepudi


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