Seminar on Social Thermodynamics
Korea University sealIn 2011, Korea University Graduate School was offering a three credit graduate course entitled “Seminar on Social Thermodynamics” SOS 623 (SOS short for Sociology of Science), as described above, a type of human thermodynamics education course divided into two parts: firstly, general systems theory, a discussion of its basic outline, along with its drawbacks; and, second, with what they referred to as the “theory of social thermodynamics and its applications”, supposedly on some variant of social thermodynamics, at the introductory level, and discussion of its applications, either theoretical or possibly in the applied human thermodynamics area, an example being the the 2009 company "Social Thermodynamics Applied Research" (or SThAR). The program, as indicative of its two cultures approach, employs a "two-supervisors system" : one is based on human or social science, the other is based on natural science or engineering. [17]
In education, human thermodynamics education refers to any course or assignment taught in high school, college, or graduate school that teaches subjects related to human thermodynamics or branches of, e.g. economic thermodynamics, or related subjects such as human chemistry. Being that "human thermodynamics" and its branches, e.g. sociological thermodynamics, are considered either a newly developing science or a science of the future, related subjects are often only given as assignments or found as a part of a course.

BYU | Science Phy 453 – Sociology and Physics
In 2011, Brigham Young University, was running a winter 400-level course called “Science Phy 453: Sociology and Physics”, taught by professor David Samuels Barnard, whose course notes contain Mieczyslaw Dobija’s 2004 “Theories of Chemistry and Physics Applied to Developing an Economic Theory of Intellectual Capital”, Jing Chen’s 2008 “Understanding Social Systems: a Free Energy Perspective”, which, in turn, cities the works of John Bryant (2007), Bikas Chakrabarti (2005), Charles Hall (1986), Paul Colinvaux, Erich Muller (1998), Jurgen Mimkes (2005), Libb Thims (2007), and the Rossini debate works of Harold Leonard (2006) and Frederick Rossini (1971), among other residual works, such as Edwin Jaynes. [24]

University of Sydney | Social Thermodynamics PhD
In 2017, the engineering and information technologies department at the University of Sydney was advertising (Ѻ)(Ѻ) a 3-year $27K annual stipend allowance funded for “student undertaking a PhD in social thermodynamics [aimed at] developing a framework to model social systems (e.g. urban development) using the state of the art techniques of non-equilibrium statistical mechanics and thermodynamics”, done under the guidance, presumably, of civil engineer Ramil Nigmatullin (Ѻ), who relies on far from equilibrium models.

See main: Two cultures (call)
The call for the development of an interdisciplinary field of mathematics, chemistry, physics, thermodynamics, and engineering overlapping and integrated into the subjects of the humanities, in such a way to dissolve the ever-growing two cultures divide, has been wanting for nearly two-centuries. To exemplify, the following is Austrian social economist Werner Stark's noted 1962 self-query as to why Thomas Huxley’s 1871 call for the development of the field of social chemistry has never actuated: [19]

Why should no social chemistry ever been developed? He states that “nobody would suggest that the social scientists should imitate meteorology, for this discipline does not appear to have got very far … but what about chemistry? A sociology based on chemistry [has] in fact been called for, but, significantly, [this call has] found no echo. It would have been easy to take up this suggestion and develop it further. An intending social chemist would have found it one whit more difficult to manufacture a sociological parallel to the Boyle-Charles law than Haret did to the Newtonian propositions. But the experiment appears never to have been tried. Why?”
Two Cultures Department
The template design for Libb Thims-conceived C.P. Snow-themed Two Cultures Department, teaching the subject matter structured about the interdisciplinary relationship between second law (Clausius) and the various branches of the humanities (Shakespeare), bridging the gap between the famously left-brain right-brain divided "two cultures"; the synthesis of which being first captured in the mind of Goethe (see: Goethe timeline), and tested in the coursework of Leon Winiarski at the University of Geneva (1894-1900), in his thermodynamics-based socio-political economics course (see: social mechanics). [23]

In 2012, to exemplify the modern graduate student need, Italian physicist Simone Loreti sent the following email query to the Institute of Human Thermodynamics, as received by American electrochemical engineer Libb Thims: [21]

“In March 2011, I graduated with a master's degree in theoretical physics at the University of Bologna (Italy). I am strongly interested in sociophysics or in general in physics applied to human behavior: in my thesis I solved a sociological problem using statistical mechanics, and machine learning methods. I am looking for a PhD in socio-physics or human thermodynamics and/or funds for it. Do you know something about it? Any advice is welcome.”

Thims informed Loreti that he was in the process of attempting to establish a "two cultures university" department in America presently.

The first to remotely incorporate early versions of human chemical thermodynamics in college lecture was German polyintellect Johann Goethe who in his 1796 university lectures on anatomy discussed how affinity chemistry might apply to the interactions between humans.

The first to teach a college course utilizing thermodynamics in the humanities was Polish economist Léon Winiarski, who beginning in 1894 was teaching a course called "Social Mechanics" at the University of Geneva; a teaching methodology as outlined in his 1900 sociology symposium article "The Teaching of Pure Political Economics and Social Mechanics in Switzerland".

The first to promote the teaching of thermodynamics in educational curricula was American historian Henry Adams, who in 1910, at the age of seventy-two, wrote his A Letter To American Teachers of History, suggesting that it was paramount that the implications of the second law of thermodynamics be learned by history teachers and professors and taught as part of history class curriculum, throughout America.

In human thermodynamics, teaching applications have generally been in the fields of history, government, economics, psychology, sociology, and science. In human chemistry, teaching applications have, of recent begun to center around the nature of human bonding, from the psychological and chemical perspective. To cite one example, so strong is the belief that human bonds are inherently chemical bonds (i.e. human chemical bonds), that within the last few years, high school chemistry teachers have begun assigning Internet-based homework assignments in which students are told to use chemical bonding theories to explain the ebb and flow of conflict and collaboration of human relations in terms of manifestations of chemical bonding effects. [1]

Of the two, human chemistry and human thermodynamics, the latter is the more difficult subject and is finding a slower entrance into general education. In the 2007 book A History of Thermodynamics, German physicist Ingo Müller, a professor of thermodynamics for over 30-years, for instance, outlines his opinion that the field of human thermodynamics is a science of the future. In particular, in his section on “socio-thermodynamics”, he states that “on several occasions I have hinted at the usefulness of thermodynamic concepts in remote areas, i.e. fields that have little or nothing to do with thermodynamics as first sight.” He continues, “those hints would be wanton remarks unless I corroborated them somehow, in order to acquaint the reader with the spirit of extrapolation away from thermodynamic proper.” To be sure, he reasons,

“Most such subjects [social thermodynamics] are more to the future of thermodynamics rather than to its history.”

In the current view, he points out that “they are struggling to be taken seriously, and to obtain admission into the field.” [2]

Human thermodynamics education textbooks
Some, being new to the study of human thermodynamics, may in hasty reaction question the "merits" or praise worthy qualities of the teaching of human thermodynamics as part of a standard engineering thermodynamics curriculum. In regards to this query or concern, in the context of human thermodynamics education, the following is the list of thermodynamics textbooks that include human thermodynamics material as part of its teaching coursework:

Human thermodynamics branch

1964Bazarov thermodynamics 250pxThermodynamics

Ivan Bazarov (1916-2005)
Russian physicist
Heat death argument for the existence of god (Friedrich Engels)
● Heat death argument against the existence of god (Bazarov)
● Universal origins
1973Thermodynamics (van Wylen)Fundamentals of Classical Thermodynamics

Gordon van Wylen (1920-)
American mechanical engineer
Richard Sonntag (1933-2010)
American mechanical engineer
Philosophical thermodynamics
● Argument for/belief in the existence of God/Creationism
● Universal origins (low entropy state)/Eschatology
Destiny of humans (second law)
1999Chemical and Process Thermodynamics (1999)Chemical and Process Thermodynamics

Benjamin Kyle (1927-)
American chemical engineer
Two cultures (C.P. Snow)
● Universal origins/Eschatology/Heat death (Friedrich Engels, Ivan Bazarov)
Religious thermodynamics (William Inge, Pope Pius XII, Pierre Teilhard)
Animate thermodynamics (life, origin of life; defunct theory of life)
Social thermodynamics/Anthropological thermodynamics (Claude Levi-Strauss)
History thermodynamics (Henry Adams)
Economic thermodynamics (Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen)
Ecological economics (Herman Daly, Jeremy Rifkin)
Literature thermodynamics (John Barth, Donald Barthelme, Saul Bellow, Stanley Elkin, Norman Mailer, Walker Percy, Thomas Pynchon, John Updike)
Art thermodynamics (Rudolf Arnheim)
Philosophical thermodynamics (Kyle)
Psychological thermodynamics (Sigmund Freud)

2004Heterogeneous Kinetics (2004)Heterogeneous Kinetics: Theory of Ziegler-Natta-Kaminsky (chapter 2: Chemical Thermodynamics)

Tominaga Keii (1920-2009)
Japanese chemical engineer
Chemical Affinity in 1806
Human chemical thermodynamics: Elective Affinities; human elective affinity; human chemical reaction, Goethe's affinity table, Goethe's human chemistry (Johann Goethe)
Thermodynamics an Engineering Approach (2006) (s)Thermodynamics an Engineering Approach

Yunus Cengel (1955-)
Turkey mechanical engineer
Michael Boles (1943-)
American mechanical engineer
Economic thermodynamics (Robert Ayres)
Human thermodynamics (human performance/efficiency in daily existence, learning (low-entropy learning), work place friction, human friction, social friction (entropy generation), etc.)
War thermodynamics
2010Thermodynamics (Kreuzer and Tamblyn) (s)Thermodynamics

Hans Kreuzer (c.1945-)
Canadian atmospheric physicist
Isaac Tamblyn (c.1983-)
Canadian physicist
Economic thermodynamics (Wayne Saslow)
2011Advanced Engineering ThermodynamicsAdvanced Engineering Thermodynamics

Kalyan Annamalai (c.1943-)
Ishwar Puri
Milind Jog
Human molecular formula (Libb Thims)
2011Engineering Thermodynamics and 21st Century Energy ProblemsEngineering Thermodynamics and 21st Century Energy Problems

Donna Riley (c.1971-)
● Entropy as a Social Construct (social thermodynamics)
● Entropy’s Philosophical Implications (philosophical thermodynamics)
● Thermo to Life (defunct theory of life)
● Ethics of Energy Disasters (ethics)

University courses
The following are outlines of prototype human thermodynamics courses that have been taught at various universities:

1894-1900Léon WiniarskiTaught a course on "social mechanics", focused on economics and sociology, based on the thermodynamics of German physicist Rudolf Clausius and the dynamics of Italian mathematician Joseph Lagrange.
University of Geneva
1930sRobert Lindsay Taught an entropy ethics theory coursesBrown University
1980sDick HammondPromoted the teaching of "entropy ethics" and "energy education" in various schools (elementary, high school, and college)University of Texas
1997-2006Richard PiccardTaught a general education course called "Entropy and Society", associated with the physics department, intermittently, based on American economist Jeremy Rifkin's 1989 book Entropy: Into the Greenhouse World, called "Entropy and Society".

The course is for seniors, with focus on developing a general education student's ability to interrelate, synthesize, and integrate knowledge from different academic disciplines, and examines Rifkin’s theory that matter and energy are conserved, but that physical processes transform both into forms less readily useful (thereby "increasing entropy") according to the material entropy hypothesis. They apply this concept of entropy to human activity, critically examining works by advocates of solar and nuclear power, from the viewpoints of, and using the patterns of inquiry of, several disciplines (e.g., history, theology, economics, physics, politics, engineering, biology, chemistry, ethics, and sociology).

Using Rifkin’s 1989 book Entropy: Into the Greenhouse World, which sets forth the thesis that this concept of entropy has a much broader applicability, in such fields as social science, politics, health, etc., the course explores whether this broadening of application makes sense. The immediate goal for students is to try to get some understanding of what entropy means when the term is used in its home territory, physical science and engineering. On this basis, the problem immediately arises when applying entropy to society is that the basic definition of entropy is mathematical. As such, the course focuses on the philosophical aspects (i.e. philosophical thermodynamics) rather than the practical aspects of entropy; and avoids mathematics, for the most part.
Ohio University
2008Richard HughesA course on a thermodynamical interpretation of politics and world government. California State University, Sacramento
2009Bruce ClarkeEnglish 4342.001: a course called "Literary and Narrative Theory", where one of the five reading material selections is American novelist Thomas Pynchon’s thermodynamic themed novel The Crying of Lot 49, in which students are assigned to critique Pynchon’s views on thermodynamic entropy and information theory entropy in relation to the plot. [14] Clarke has begun using as reference material for his class.Texas Tech University
c.2008Joseph McCauleyFounded the econophysics department at the University of Houston, pictured below right, which touches on aspects of applied thermodynamics in economics.University of Houston

In 2013, Harvard University Graduate School of Design offered a four credit seminar course entitled “Air in Motion / Thermodynamic Materialism”, taught by Inaki Abalos and Matthias Schuler, in which air and or space (see: nature abhors a vacuum) is treated and studied “thermodynamically”, rather than metaphorically, poetically, or phenomenologically, as has been done traditionally. An excerpt from the course description is: [6]

“The revision carried out by the thermodynamics from the mid XIXth is critical when reconsidering the architectural and landscape conception of this element, thus happened to be a real building material. This is enabled by parametric digital media, which allows not only deciphering its changing nature over time but also conceiving artificial environments, opening new territories at the scale of buildings, public spaces [see also: personal space] and the landscape. Now, the air in movement demands to be studied in its different manifestations, to reveal its power through meticulous analysis, to map them and to conceptualize what we are calling a new idea of thermodynamic beauty [see: beauty] which completes the tectonic tradition and points new directions to architect´s work.”

The second part of the course deals with "thermodynamic materialism", in some way, in coordination with a research project at ETH Zurich titled "Thermodynamic Materialism".
A snapshot of the econophysics department a the University of Houston, run by Joseph McCauley, who specializes in financial physics, but is against thermodynamics applied to economics (thermoeconomics). [18]

Graduate degrees
See main: Thermodynamics dissertations
In 1969, English science historian Jeremy Adler completed his PhD thesis, at Westfield College, London, on the underlying chemists, affinity theory (affinity being a function of free energy), and specific affinity reactions in Goethe’s novella Elective Affinities; work later becoming very instrumental in American chemical engineer Libb Thims’ 2007 textbook Human Chemistry.

In 1974, American philosopher Carter Finn completed his thesis/dissertation, in philosophical thermodynamics and religious thermodynamics, on “Religion, Philosophy, and the Second Law of Thermodynamics”, at the College of William and Mary.

In 1975, American political scientist Stephen Coleman completed his PhD dissertation, at the University of Minnesota, in political thermodynamics, on Measurement and Analysis of Political Systems: a Science of Social Behavior, or on entropy measurements in social systems and with focus on voting and elections. [10]
Coleman notes, however, that the focus of his degree was on the purely information theory side of fence and not necessarily a thermodynamics related agenda.

In 1978, American educator Dick Hammond did his EdD thesis, at the University of Arkansas and University of Texas, under Belgian thermodynamicist Ilya Prigogine, on Analysis of Entropy Reduction and its Implications for Ethical Instruction in Public Education. [11]

In 1991, as described in the book Continuous System Modeling, Swiss electrical engineer Francois Cellier suggested that the thermodynamics of macroeconomies would be a "very worthwhile topic for a PhD dissertation". [16]
Jurgen Mimkes (lecturing)
German socio-economic physicist Jürgen Mimkes lecturing, at the 2005 2005 Navodari Econophysic Conference, , on the thermodynamic applications in economics. [6]

In 2005, American chemical engineer Libb Thims suggested that, in the near future, graduate students will be able to complete their PhD in human thermodynamics. [5]

In 2009, an anonymous Turkey third-year undergraduate mechanical engineer (Turnkey13) expressed desire to come to America to complete a master’s degree in on a topic related to thermodynamic of human life, having been inspired by passages (shown below) in the 2006 thermodynamics textbook by Yunus Cengel and Michael Boles who state that: [12]

“The arguments presented here are exploratory in nature, and they are hoped to initiate some interesting discussion and research that may lead into better understanding of performance in various aspects of daily life. The second law may eventually be used to determine quantitatively the most effective way to improve the quality of life and performance in daily life, as it is presently used to improve the performance of engineering systems.”
LT (lecturing1)LT (lecturing3)
Left: American electrochemical engineer Libb Thims lecturing in 2010 on an introduction to human thermodynamics to bioengineering students, at a local Chicago university, standing adjacent to pictures of Clausius, Gibbs, and Lewis. Right: Thims explaining how the Papin engine relates to human chemical affinities, Gibbs free energy, and morality (right or wrong).

His question to Thims was which books should he read to better understand this topic with regard to entropy and human relations, to which Thims replied that he should start with Thims' 2007 textbook Human Chemistry, as it contains all known publications written on entropy and human relations. [13]

In 2011, American civil-ecological engineer Jeff Tuhtan completed his PhD dissertation “A Modeling Approach for Alpine Rivers Impacted by Hydropeaking Including the Second Law Inequality”, using Hmolpedia as his "strange loop", in the language of Douglas Hofstadter, research tool for gaining a handle on how to go about applying thermodynamics correctly to model fish communities, the result of which he employed thermodynamics to deriving a conceptual model designed for alpine river fish habitat.

High school courses
In 2002, at New Trier high school, in Illinois, assigned a project wherein students were asked to consider how elements and chemical species chemically bond or conflict, and to think about how these polar opposite processes of bonding and conflicting play out in life, specifically in human relationships, in the form of human chemical bonds. [1]
Naga City Science High School (human thermodynamics)
The physics class at Naga City Science High School using American electrochemical engineer Libb Thims’ 2009 “Human Thermodynamics Pioneers” video to supplement the thermodynamics portion of the class. [20]

In this assignment, it was argued that by studying how elements interact and bond to each other, students might learn about how humans interact and bond with each other. Suggestive queries were ‘how does electrical attraction promote bonding in certain species,’ or ‘how do incongruent physical shapes between compounds can promote debonding,’ and ‘why does the famed opposites attract scenario occurs in chemistry?’, etc. One interesting suggestion was to try to determine what kind of hypothetical chemical bond Romeo and Juliet had in their high-energy relationship. Interestingly, in regards to this last question, even Shakespeare himself had ideas about human chemical bonding. In particular, Shakespeare assumed the existence of an external force that induces amorous attraction. [4]

Over the last hundred years, discussions and lectures on the applications of thermodynamics to human life and society, often in their philosophical implications, have occurred in various science-related conferences. Since the mid-1990s, for instance, German metalurgist and solid state thermodynamicist Jürgen Mimkes has been attending various economic conferences in Europe where he lectures on the applications of thermodynamics in economics; such as the 2005 Navodari Econophysic Conference, where he lectured on the applications of thermodynamics in economics . [6]

On March 14, 2008, American chemical engineers Ted Erikson and Libb Thims attended the the annual American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) meeting at Harper College (Palatine, Illinois) where Erickson discussed Thims’ human molecule theories in lecture.

In an April 29, 2006, Russian-born American language studies scholar Natalia Roubanenko commented, after reviewing Thims' unfinished 100-page manuscript Cessation Thermodynamics, that:

“One day instead of (or in addition to) regular math, chemistry, physics, etc., kids in school will be learning something like one human molecule + another human molecule = ? ... it's just a crazy thought, but hey, we'll see or somebody will.”

In 2007, American educator Astrida Tantillo, head of the department of Germanic studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago and author of the 2001 book Goethe’s Elective Affinities and the Critics, noted that some of her students had recently requested to do papers on German polymath Johann Goethe human chemistry theory, and referred to the fact that Thims’ 2007 Human Chemistry textbook would be useful in this respect. [9]

The page is used as a “related links” page for the 2009 course BI 6101 Introductory Biology, on the study of the energy of the ecosystem, cell, and human, at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. [15]

In 2013, a seeming-to-be human thermodynamics education course in architectural thermodynamics, a graduate school seminar course entitled "Air in Motion / Thermodynamic Materialism" taught at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, wherein air and or space (see: nature abhors a vacuum) is treated "thermodynamically"; the second half of which is devoted to a study of thermodynamic materialism, taught in coordination with a research project at ETH Zurich titled "Thermodynamic Materialism". [22]

See also
List of thermodynamics textbooks that include human thermodynamics

1. (a) Chemistry Department. (2002). “It’s all about Bonding: How Humans, Animals, Chemicals, and Natural Forces, have Conflicted in Time, but Also Worked Together.” Class.
(b) Research Outline Plan (PDF).
2. Muller, Ingo. (2007). A History of Thermodynamics - the Doctrine of Energy and Entropy, (section: "Socio-thermodynamics", pgs. 159-164). New York: Springer.
3. (a) Huwe, Darrell O. & Piccard, Richard D. (1997). “Notes on Entropy and Human Activity”, 22-pages, (constitutes the notes for many of the lectures).
(b) Piccard, Richard D. (2006). “Syllabus: Entropy and Human Activity”, Winter, Call No. 06449. Physics Department, Ohio University.
4. Tennov, D. (1999). Love and Limerence – the Experience of Being in Love. New York: Scarborough House.
5. FAQ #3: Where is HT headed? - Institute of Human Thermodynamics.
6. Photos of Mimkes - at the 2005 Navodari Econophysic Conference.
7. (a) Hammond, Dick K. (2005). The Human System from Entropy to Ethics, 4th ed. (eulogy ed. with commentary on post-doctorial mentor Ilya Prigogine). Publisher: Dick Hammond.
(b) Richard D. Hughes – California State University, Sacramento.
(c) A Thermodynamic View of Politics (PDF) – by Richard D. Hughes.
8. Email from Natalia Roubanenko to Libb Thims on Saturday, April 29, 2006 6:02 PM.
9. Comments to Libb Thims from Astridia Orle Tantillo, at her UIC office, on 10/15/07.
10. Coleman, Stephen. (1975). Measurement and Analysis of Political Systems: a Science of Social Behavior. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
11. Hammond, Dick E. (1978). Analysis of Entropy Reduction and its Implications for Ethical Instruction in Public Education. University of Arkansas.
12. (a) Cengel, Yunus A. and Boles, Michael A. (2006). Thermodynamics: an Engineering Approach (ch. 4, pg. 193, ch. 7, pg. 349, ch. 8, pgs. 465-69). McGraw-Hill.
(b) Email communicate to American chemical engineer Libb Thims.
13. Messaging to Libb Thims from turnkey13 on 30 Jan 2009.
14. (a) Clark, Bruce. (2009). “Two Kinds of Entropy (class discussion material)”, Texas Tech University.
(b) English 4342.001, Spring 2009 – Literary and Narrative Theory, Texas Tech University.
15. Related links (BI 6101 Introductory Biology) – Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
16. (a) Cellier, Francois. (1991). Continuous System Modeling (pg. 330). Springer.
(b) François E. Cellier –
17. Social Thermodynamics (courses) – Korea University Graduate School.
18. Econophysics (faculty) – University of Houston.
19. (a) Stark, Werner. (1962). The Fundamental Forms of Social Thought. (pgs. 261-63). Routledge.
(b) Huxley, Thomas. (1871). “Administrative Nihilism”, Fortnightly Review, pg. 536. Nov. 1.
20. (a) Human thermodynamics pioneers (2010-11) – Jonatz’s physics class, Naga City Science High,
(b) Naga City Science High – Wikipedia.
21. Email query sent by Simone Loreti on 15 Apr 2012, received by Libb Thims, via the Institute of Human Thermodynamics email query address.
22. Abalos, Inaki and Schuler, Matthias. (2013). “DES-03438: Seminar: Air in Motion / Thermodynamic Materialism”, Spring, Harvard University, Graduate School of Design.
23. (a) Two Cultures Department (design) modified from the 1993 Cambridge University Press edition of C.P. Snow’s The Two Cultures.
(b) Snow, C.P. (1959). The Two Cultures, Rede Lectures; Cambridge University Press, 1993.
24. (a) Barnard, David S. (2011). “Science Phy 453 – Sociology and Physics” (Ѻ); SSRN-id1269035 (Ѻ), Brigham Young University, Winter,
(b) Chin, Jing. (2008). “Understanding Social Systems: a Free Energy Perspective” (abs),, Sep 16.
(c) Dobija, Mieczyslaw. (2004). “Theories of Chemistry and Physics Applied to Developing an Economic Theory of Intellectual Capital” (abs), in: Knowledge Café for Intellectual Entrepreneurship Through or Against Institutions, Wydawnictwo WSPiZ im. Leona Koźmińskiego, Warszawa.

TDics icon ns