Durham University
29th July – 2nd August 2019

Image Credit:
Alessandra Aloisi,
Ryan Cooke,
Azadeh Fattahi,
Till Sawala,
Adrien Thob.

Scientific Rationale

Dwarf galaxies play a fundamental role in our understanding of cosmology and galaxy formation. They are the most abundant galaxy population in the Universe and mark the boundary between galaxies and dark matter subhaloes devoid of baryonic material. As a result these low mass galaxies provide a unique opportunity to study the basic building blocks of galaxy haloes and probe the identity of dark matter. In this conference we will bring together researchers studying dwarf galaxies from the local Milky Way to the high redshift Universe and discuss the critical open questions posed by dwarf galaxies. In particular, we aim to address the following key questions:

  1. Is ΛCDM correct? What can dwarf galaxies tell us about the identity of dark matter?
  2. Can we identify the signatures of reionization amongst the dwarf population? What role did dwarf galaxies play in the reionization of the Universe?
  3. What do the star formation histories and chemical properties of dwarfs tell us about galaxy formation? Are there signatures of the first stars in dwarf galaxies?
  4. How will the next generation of surveys and simulations answer the above questions?

We aim to bring together astronomers from a range of fields in order to address these fundamental questions, to highlight the principle open issues, and to discuss the future observational and theoretical advances that are needed to make progress. Contributions will be in the form of long and short presentations, as well as active discussion sessions.

Click here to download the conference poster!

Scientific Organising Committee

Gurtina Besla (University of Arizona)
Michelle Collins (University of Surrey)
Ryan Cooke (co-chair; Durham University)
Alis Deason (co-chair; Durham University)
Carlos Frenk (Durham University)
Andrew Pontzen (University College London)
Brian Siana (University of California Riverside)
Eline Tolstoy (University of Groningen)

Code of Conduct

The organizers are committed to making this meeting productive and enjoyable for everyone, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, nationality or religion. We will not tolerate harassment of participants in any form. All participants are required to abide by the following Code of Conduct to help us achieve a safe and positive conference for everyone. Please follow these guidelines:

  1. Be kind to and respect others. Do not insult or put down other attendees.
  2. Behave professionally. Harassment and sexist, racist, or exclusionary comments or jokes are not appropriate. Harassment includes sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, sexual attention or innuendo, deliberate intimidation, stalking, and photography or recording of an individual without consent. It also includes offensive comments related to gender, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race or religion.
  3. All communication should be appropriate for a professional audience including people of many different backgrounds. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate.
Participants asked to stop any inappropriate behaviour are expected to comply immediately. Attendees violating these rules may be asked to leave the event at the sole discretion of the organizers without a refund of any charge.

Any participant who wishes to report a violation of this policy is asked to speak, in confidence, to either Ryan Cooke (ryan.j.cooke@durham.ac.uk), Alis Deason (alis.j.deason@durham.ac.uk), or any member of the SOC.


This code of conduct is based on the "London Code of Conduct", as originally designed for the conference "Accurate Astrophysics. Correct Cosmology", held in London in July 2015. The London Code of Conduct was adapted with permission by Andrew Pontzen and Hiranya Peiris from a document by Software Carpentry, which itself derives from original Creative Commons documents by PyCon and Geek Feminism. It is released under a CC-Zero licence for reuse.

Important Dates

All deadlines are at 23:59 UTC.
15th January 2019 Pre-registration/abstract submission opens
1st April 2019 Pre-registration and abstract submission closes
1st May 2019 Programme announcement, registration opens
15th June 2019 Registration closes
29th July – 2nd August 2019 Conference

Confirmed Participants

  • Giuseppina Battaglia (Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias)
  • Vasily Belokurov (IoA, University of Cambridge)
  • Ana Bonaca (CfA, Harvard University)
  • Sownak Bose (CfA, Harvard University)
  • Alyson Brooks (Rutgers University)
  • Dawn Erb (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee)
  • Anna Frebel (MIT)
  • Marla Geha (Yale University)
  • Alex Ji (Carnegie Observatories)
  • Nitya Kallivayalil (University of Virginia)
  • Claudia Scarlata (University of Minnesota)
  • Dan Stark (The University of Arizona)
  • Else Starkenburg (Leibniz-Institut fur Astrophysik Potsdam)
  • Louis Strigari (Texas A&M University)
  • Dan Weisz (University of California Berkeley)
  • Andrew Wetzel (University of California Davis)
  • John Wise (Georgia Institute of Technology)
  • Registration is open!

    The conference programme will be announced shortly - thanks for your patience!

    Please register at this link

    Things to do in Durham (and places to stay)

    Kids & Childcare

    For those bringing family and children with them to Durham during the conference, we will provide a list of entertainment suggestions shortly.
    For under-5's we've contacted a local nursery (Stepping Stones) who are able to take a small number of extra children during the conference. This will need to be arranged well in advance of the conference, so if you would like to discuss this further, please contact alis.j.deason@durham.ac.uk. Alternatively, you can find a list of registered local childcare professionals at the Durham County Council Families Information Service.

    The Venue

    The conference will be held in the Ph8 Lecture Theatre in the Rochester Building (Physics Department), on the Durham University Science site. The nearest airport is Newcastle Airport (about 40min-1hr by taxi) and the nearest train station is in Durham City centre (25 min walk or a 5 min taxi ride).

    Eating out

    Durham has a wide range of restaurants and cafes around town. If you'd like some ideas on where to go to eat, we've listed a selection of the options within walking distance of the Physics Department and the town centre here.

    Places to Stay

    For information about accommodation options, see here.

    Things to do

    For suggestions on activities (including good pubs) around the Durham area, see here.


    • Address

      Ogden Centre West
      Durham University
      Durham, DH1 3LE
      United Kingdom