Peter AllenIn existographies, Peter Murray Allen (1944-) (CR:1) is an English theoretical physicist noted for his dissipative structure theory work with Belgian chemist Ilya Prigogine, particularly as applied to evolution theory and sociology.

In 1981, Allen, in his “The Evolutionary Paradigm of Dissipative Structures”, commented the following overtypical view:

“The word ‘evolution’ in the physical sciences has traditionally referred to the movement towards thermodynamic equilibrium; the elimination of nonuniformities and the increase of disorder within the system, while in biology it has been associated with increasing complexity, specialization and organization.”

The article: second law (disordering) evolution (ordering) gives reconciliations for further discussion of these apparent conflicting views.

Allen is the editor in chief of Emergence: Complexity and Organization, an interdisciplinary conversation about human organizations as complex systems and the implications of complexity science for those organizations; where many of his recent publications are found.

In 2002, Allen attended an EIASM meeting on “Thermodynamics of Social Systems”, during which he presented a talk entitled “Evolution, Emergence, and Learning in Complex Systems”. (Ѻ)

Allen completed BS in physics in 1965 and a PhD in theoretical physics, specializing in statistical mechanics, in 1969, both at the University of Hull, after which, from 1969 to 1971, he was a Royal Society European research fellow and, from 1972 to 1987, a senior research fellow at the Universite Libre de Bruxelles, where he worked with Belgian chemist Ilya Prigogine. Allen then joined Cranfield University as chair and as professor of evolutionary complexity theory, focusing on sustainability, economics, environment, and business management. Presently, Allen is professor emeritus of Cranfield University.

1. (a) Allen, Peter M. (1981). “The Evolutionary Paradigm of Dissipative Structures”, in: The Evolutionary Vision: Toward a Unifying Paradigm of Physical, Biological, and Sociocultural Evolution (editor: Erich Jantsch) (pgs. 25-72). Westview Press.
(b) Brooks, Daniel R. and Wilson, E.O. (1988). Evolution as Entropy: Toward a Unified theory of Biology (pg. 82). University of Chicago Press.
2. Emergence: Complexity and Organization –

Further reading
● Schieve, W.C. and Allen, Peter M. (1982). Self-Organization and Dissipative Structures: Applications in the Physical and Social Sciences. University of Texas Press.
● Allen, Peter. (1985). “Ecology, Thermodynamics, and Self-Organization”, in: Ecosystem Theory for Biological Oceanography (pgs. 3-26) (editors: Robert Ulanowicz and Platt), Bulletin of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 213.
● Allen, Peter. (2002). “Evolution, Emergence, and Learning in Complex Systems”, presented at EIASM meeting on “Thermodynamics of Social Systems”, Brussels.

External links
Peter Allen (faculty) – Cranfield University, England.
Allen, Peter M. (Peter Murray) (1944-) – WorldCat Identities.

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