The conference will be held from Monday 8 to Friday 12 September 2014 in Marseille at the congress center “Palais du Pharo” located on the “Vieux Port”. It will focus on observational and computational star formation in the Milky Way and external galaxies, emphasizing the link between these fields. The first aim of this meeting is to bring together the Galactic and extragalactic communities to exchange new results and discuss the perspectives offered by rich existing and forthcoming facilities such as Herschel, Spitzer, Sofia, JWST, as well as radio-telescopes and interferometers such as ALMA, EVLA and the future NOEMA and SKA. The second aim of the conference is to confront the latest results regarding analytical models and simulations to detailed observations of clouds and star formation in the Milky Way and other galaxies.
Comprehensive Herschel and Spitzer surveys combined with high-resolution interferometric observations at millimeter wavelengths provide a new, remarkably unified, view of star formation over all cosmic ages. Galactic evolution and star formation rates are now believed to be driven by “normal” star formation in galactic disks. In the meantime, the origin of the so-called Schmidt-Kennicutt relation is about to be fully understood by means of recent studies in the Milky Way. Besides, cooling lines in the far-infrared with Herschel and Sofia and molecular lines in the (sub)millimeter in particular with ALMA offer exciting opportunities to model cloud kinematics and study ISM chemistry. One can now investigate important parameters of individual star-forming regions such as the efficiency of star formation, the IMF, and the detailed properties of clouds like density structure, turbulence forcing, and Galactic shear. The new challenge we are facing is to fully connect the physical insights gained from detailed studies of Galactic star-forming regions to larger-scale observations and scaling relations found in other galaxies with the final goal of bridging the gap between the Milky Way and galaxies out to highest redshifts.