Abstract and topics

A golden age of knowledge and discovery in Astrophysics and Cosmology has been brought by recent advancements in instrumentation and detectors. The advent in the 90's of 10-meter class telescopes, near-infrared detectors, wide field cameras, the Hubble Space Telescope, and space-based observatories for the X-ray and the microwave background radiation, has produced an impressive body of knowledge in observational cosmology. We are now on the verge of delineating, if not completing, the mosaic that begins at the epoch when the Universe exited the Dark Ages to form stars, ionize gas, and seed metals and dust. We may be able to finally understand how the present Universe came about.
Galaxies are being observed up to z~7 probing the Universe when it had  experienced only 5% of its lifetime. Structures extending over hundreds of Mpc are being discovered by present-day wide and deep surveys carried out with the largest ground-based telescopes reaching fluxes up to 100,000 times fainter then those reached in the 70s.

The meeting aims at summarizing current knowledge in cosmology and discussing some of the milestones of the last decade. The focus will be on the fundamental questions that are still unsolved. The role that the next generation instruments will play in this field will be addressed briefly,  touching in this way upon past, present, and future, as witnessed by some of the key players. This conference aims at becoming a meeting point between the scientists that led the field a few decades ago and those  leading it now, to set guidelines for the younger scientists that will lead it in the future.

The meeting will touch on the following topics