In thermodynamics, evolution thermodynamics, or thermodynamic evolution or "thermodynamics of evolution", is the study of the process of evolution, either ecological, chemical, geological, human, social, cosmic, etc., according to the laws of thermodynamics.

The following table gives a chronological listing of the some of the main publications on this subject; shown with 2010 citation count:

Author(s) Citations

1922 “Contribution to the Energetics of Evolution” Alfred Lotka 75 Alfred Lotka 329
1922 “Natural Selection as a Physical Principle” Alfred Lotka 75 Alfred Lotka 77
1935 "A Consideration of Evolution from a Thermodynamic View-Point" photo needed 75 Harold Blum 14
1965 “Thermodynamics of Terrestrial Evolution” Jack Kirkaldy 75 Jack Kirkaldy 2
1972 “Thermodynamics of Evolution” Prigogine 75 Ilya Prigogine, Gregoire Nicolis, and Agnes Babloyantz 224
1977 “On the Thermodynamics of Biological Evolution” Georgi Gladyshev 75 Georgi Gladyshev 20
1987 Evolution, Thermodynamics, and Information: Extending the Darwinian Program photo needed 75 Jeffrey Wicken 186
1988 Energy and the Evolution of Life Ronald Fox 75 Ronald Fox 51
1989 "Theory of Radially Evolving Energy" Justin Lancaster 75
Justin Lancaster
1997 Thermodynamic Theory of the Evolution of Living Beings Georgi Gladyshev 75 Georgi Gladyshev 17
1997 “Thermodynamics, Evolution, and Behavior” photo needed 75 Rod Swenson 22
2008 Evolutionary Essays: a Thermodynamic Interpretation of Evolution Sven Jorgensen 75 Sven Jorgenson

In science, thermodynamic evolution is the process of evolution from the thermodynamic point of view. The term is often used in ecological thermodynamics. [1] There may exist some overlap in this field with evolutionary psychology.

Thermodynamics and evolution
Over the last century and half, one of the biggest conceptual puzzles has been the seeming opposite, but necessarily connected, relation between the second law of thermodynamics, as popularized by William Thomson in 1852 as the "universal tendency in nature to the dissipation of mechanical energy", combined with Rudolf Clausius' 1865 dictate that in the universe the "entropy tends to a maximum", compounded with Ludwig von Boltzmann's 1877 suggestion that entropy could be equated with the measure of the "ordered or disordered" distribution of particles in a system, as this set of logic relates to the definition of evolution as, according to fossil records, the progressive increase in order or biological structure with time as outlined by Charles Darwin in his 1859 Origin of Species. In the 1914 book Problems in Science, for instance, Italian mathematician Federigo Enriques assigned the issue of the reconciliation of thermodynamics and the phenomenon of life as one of the six main problems in science. [2]

The 1996 book Darwinism Evolving by David Depew and Bruce Weber, according to a review by blogger Jeremy Lent, is said to use a good amount of physics concepts and thermodynamics in an attempt to update the Darwin-view of evolution theory, citing the works of those as Karl Marx, Ronald Fisher, Alfred Lotka, Erwin Schrodinger, Ilya Prigogine, among others. [3]

1. Author. (2004). “Professor Jorgensen wins the 1st Prigogine Prize” in International Lake Environment Committee News Letter, No. 45, March.
2. Enriques, Federigo. (1914). Problems of Science (section: “The Mechanical Hypothesis and the Phenomena of Life”, pgs 367-87). Open Court Publishing Co.
3. (a) Depew, David J. and Weber, Bruce H. (1996). Darwinism Evolving: Systems Dynamics and the Genealogy of Natural Selection. MIT Press.
(b) Lent, Jeremy. (2010). “Crossing the Complexity Barrier: Book Review: Darwinism Evolving”, Finding the Li.

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