Theory and concepts in biology – Course and Conference Office

EMBO | EMBL Symposium

Theory and concepts in biology


This conference will take place at EMBL Heidelberg, with the option to attend virtually.

Registration is not yet open for this event. If you are interested in receiving more information please register your interest.

Symposium overview

Recent progress in biology has led to an explosion of factual knowledge about the living world over a huge range of scales in space and time. Yet, many questions about how to make sense of this data remain across the entire diversity of the living world from the smallest bacterium to the ecosystems of the Serengeti.

This meeting aims to bring together a diverse collection of researchers interested in finding ways to parlay this ever-increasing factual knowledge into a corresponding array of conceptual knowledge. The goal of this symposium is to assemble an interdisciplinary community and to provide a platform to discuss perspectives on the role of theory in biology, and importantly also vice versa, the impact that biology can have on theory.

What past participants say about the Symposium

Intense discussions on theory in biology, interactions between the mainstream and the interface, outstanding science brilliantly presented, the intellectual openness and warmth of the organising committee, and a superb conference office team, combined to create a memorable meeting. Thank you!” — Sriram Ramaswamy, Indian Institute of Science, India

As a sophomore PhD student with a background in physics, I had a wonderful opportunity to engage with various individuals and learn from them, particularly biologists. Prior to the conference, I had certain questions concerning the biological aspects of my project, and now I have gained a better understanding.” — Kartik Chhajed, Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems, Germany


Sponsorship opportunities

We offer a variety of event sponsoring possibilities, with the flexibility to select a set sponsorship package or combine individual sponsorship options to suit your event budget. Discounts are available for companies sponsoring multiple events at EMBL Heidelberg. View other conferences, or contact sponsorship@embl.de for further information.

If you are interested in becoming a media partner of this event, please visit our media partnerships webpage.


EMBL wishes to warn sponsors of EMBL conferences and courses of fraudulent schemes purporting to offer sponsorship opportunities on behalf of EMBL or affiliated with EMBL officials. One current scam campaign of which we are aware is conducted using the name ‘Judy Eastman’ (judy@gopcontact.a2hosted.com) and entails approaches to sponsors offering sponsorship opportunities on EMBL’s behalf. Please be kindly advised that all relevant communication regarding sponsorship of EMBL conferences, symposia and courses is handled by EMBL directly and is sent from an official EMBL account. EMBL does not work with any external providers on sponsorship acquisition.

Please also note that:

  • EMBL never provides attendee lists for purchase. Any offers of such are fraudulent.
  • EMBL will never call or email you to ask for your credit card details or to request a payment.
  • All payments are on invoice.

Suspicious communications purportedly from, for or on behalf of EMBL should be reported to EMBL at the following email address sponsorship@embl.de.


EMBO | EMBL Symposia promote scientific communication and collaboration in the European research area. They provide scientists with a platform to discuss and exchange ideas on forward-looking topics and new developments in the life sciences.

Topics emphasise upcoming developments and the interdisciplinary nature of related fields. Jointly funded and organised by EMBO and EMBL – and complementary to their respective courses, workshops, and conference programmes – the symposia promote scientific communication and collaboration.

All symposia are held in the EMBL Advanced Training Centre (ATC) in Heidelberg, Germany, or virtually.

Date: 6 - 9 May 2025

Location: EMBL Heidelberg and Virtual

Venue: EMBL Advanced Training Centre


  • Alexander Aulehla
    EMBL Heidelberg, Germany
    • Christina Hueschen
      University of California, San Diego
      • Jordi Garcia-Ojalvo
        Pompeu Fabra University (UPF), Spain

What's new on our blog