Leonardo Rastelli

Leonardo Rastelli, Director

Leonardo Rastelli is a Professor at the Yang Institute for Theoretical Physics (YITP), Stony Brook. He received his PhD from MIT in 2000. He was a Dicke Fellow (2000-2002) and an Assistant Professor (2002-2006) at Princeton University before joining the YITP in 2006. Rastelli is the recipient of an Outstanding Junior Investigator award, of a Simons Fellowship and of a Guggenheim Fellowship, and has been a Blavatnik national finalist. Rastelli's research interests have ranged from structural aspects of string theory to purely field-theoretic questions. Rastelli's main current focus is the study of superconformal field theories in various dimensions, by a combination of mathematical physics and numerical experimentation.

Slava Rychkov

Slava Rychkov, Deputy Director

Slava Rychkov is a Professor at the Ecole Normale Supérieure (Paris) and a permanent staff member at the Theoretical Physics Department at CERN (Geneva). He received his PhD from Princeton University (2002), followed by postdoctoral appointments at the University of Amsterdam (2002-2005) and at the Scuola Normale Superiore in Pisa (2005-2009). Rychkov has been a recipient of the New Horizons in Physics Prize. His past work covers a wide range of subjects from pure mathematics to particle physics and string theory, but his main current interest is in developing efficient techniques for solving strongly coupled quantum field theories.

Chris Beem

Christopher Beem, Principal Investigator

Christopher Beem is an Associate Professor of Mathematical Physics at the Mathematical Institute at the University of Oxford and a Tutorial Fellow at Saint John's College. He received his PhD from the University of California at Berkeley (2010), after which he held postdoctoral research positions at the Simons Center for Geometry and Physics at Stony Brook University (2010-2013) and at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton (2013-2016). His current research focuses on the algebraic properties of supersymmetric and superconformal quantum field theories.

Miguel Costa

Miguel Costa, Principal Investigator

Miguel Costa is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Sciences of Porto University, Portugal. He received his PhD from Cambridge University in 1998 and then worked as post-doctoral researcher at Princeton University (1998-2000) and at École Normale Supérieure in Paris (2000-02), before joining Porto Univeristy. Costa's research interests have convered a range of topics in string theory, including black hole physics, cosmology and particle physics. He is the recipient of the Gulbenkian Foundation Science prize of 2004. Currently his main research interests are focused in the subjects of conformal field theory and of gauge/gravity duality.

Liam Fitzpatrick

Liam Fitzpatrick, Principal Investigator

Liam Fitzpatrick joined Boston University as an Assistant Professor of Physics in 2015. He received his PhD from Harvard University, followed by postdoctoral positions at Boston University and Stanford University. He has been interested in applications of quantum field theory across many areas, including cosmology, astrophysics, materials, and the search for Beyond the Standard Model physics. His present research is mainly focused on using the conformal bootstrap to learn about quantum gravity in three dimensions through the AdS/CFT correspondence.

Tom Hartman

Thomas Hartman, Principal Investigator

Thomas Hartman is an Assistant Professor at Cornell University. He received his PhD from Harvard University, and did postdoctoral work at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, NJ and at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at UC Santa Barbara. His current work is on strongly coupled quantum field theories and quantum gravity, combining techniques from holographic duality and the conformal bootstrap.

Jared Kaplan

Jared Kaplan, Principal Investigator

Jared Kaplan is an Assistant Professor at Johns Hopkins University (JHU). He received his PhD in 2009 from Harvard University, and then worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University and SLAC before joining the faculty of JHU in 2012. As a faculty member, he has been the recipient of an NSF CAREER award and a Sloan Foundation Fellowship. Kaplan has worked on an array of topics including phenomenology, cosmology, and scattering amplitudes, but for the past five years he has focused on the bootstrap approach to AdS/CFT and quantum gravity. He is currently working on the problem of information loss from three-dimensional AdS black holes using two-dimensional CFT techniques.

Ami Katz

Ami Katz, Principal Investigator

Ami Katz is an Associate Professor at Boston University. He received his PhD in 2001 from MIT, and was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Washington and at SLAC. He was the recipient of an NSF CAREER award and was a Sloan Foundation Fellow. Katz’s interests include application of quantum field theory and effective theory to Beyond the Standard Model physics and condensed matter systems. Presently he is focused on developing Hamiltonian truncation methods for studying non-perturbative phenomena in quantum field theory.

Zohar Komargodski

Zohar Komargodski, Principal Investigator

Zohar Komargodski is a Professor at the Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel. He received his Ph.D. from the Weizmann Institute of Science in 2008. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study (2008-2013) and joined the Weizmann Institute of Science in 2011. Komargodski’s current research interests are in non-perturbative aspects of Quantum Field Theory and their applications to Particle Physics, String Theory, and Condensed Matter. Komargodski is the recipient of several awards, such as the New Horizons in Physics Prize, the Gribov Medal, and the Philippe Meyer Prize in Theoretical Physics.

Joao Penedones

João Penedones, Principal Investigator

João Penedones is an Assistant Professor at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland. He received his PhD in 2007 from Porto University. He then worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow until 2011 at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara and at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, Waterloo, Canada. From 2011 to 2016 he was a Research Fellow at Porto University, Portugal. His main research activities lie in the context of the gauge/gravity duality and the conformal bootstrap approach to conformal field theory. He is currently working on extending the bootstrap approach to massive quantum field theories (S-matrix bootstrap).

David Poland

David Poland, Principal Investigator

David Poland is an Assistant Professor at Yale University. He received his PhD from U.C. Berkeley in 2008. He has also worked at Harvard University as a Postdoctoral Fellow (2008-2011) and at the Institute for Advanced Study as both a Member (2011-2012) and a Junior Visiting Professor (2015-2016). He has also been the recipient of an NSF CAREER award. David’s research is focused on developing new nonperturbative methods for quantum field theory, with applications to particle physics, condensed matter physics, and quantum gravity.

Silviu Pufu

Silviu Pufu, Principal Investigator

Silviu Pufu is an Assistant Professor at Princeton University. He received his PhD from Princeton University in 2011, and then joined the MIT Center for Theoretical Physics as a Pappalardo Postdoctoral Fellow (2011-2013). He is interested in learning about renormalization group flows and conformal field theories by combining various techniques such as the conformal bootstrap, supersymmetric localization, perturbative and non-perturbative methods, and the gauge/gravity duality.

David Simmons-Duffin

David Simmons-Duffin, Principal Investigator

David Simmons-Duffin is a member of the School of Natural Sciences at the Institute for Advanced Study (2012-2017). He will join the faculty at Caltech as an assistant professor in 2017. David recieved his PhD from Harvard in 2012. His research focuses on strongly-coupled quantum field theories, with a particular interest in conformal field theories and their applications.

Balt van Rees

Balt van Rees, Principal Investigator

Balt van Rees is a lecturer in the Mathematics Department at Durham University, UK. He received his PhD in 2010 from Amsterdam University. Subsequently he was a C.N. Yang Fellow at Stony Brook University (2010-2013) and a fellow at CERN (2013-2015). His research interests cover the gauge/gravity dualities, non-perturbative methods for quantum field theory and supersymmetry. He currently works on supersymmetric field theories and the S-matrix bootstrap.

Pedro Vieira

Pedro Vieira, Principal Investigator

Pedro Vieira is a faculty member at the Perimeter Institute in Canada and a visiting professor at the ICTP-SAIFR in Brazil. Vieira is an expert in integrability and gauge/gravity dualities and is a world leader in the study of supersymmetric Yang-Mills theory — a strongly coupled gauge theory, and one the most interesting CFTs. Recently, he has been studying the S-matrix bootstrap as well. In 2015 he became a Sloan Research Fellow and was awarded the Gribov medal.


Affiliated Investigators

Miguel Paulos

Miguel Paulos

Miguel Paulos is a Fellow at CERN and will join the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at Cambridge University having been awarded a Royal Society University Research Fellowship. He received his PhD also at Cambridge in 2010, followed by postdoctoral positions at the Universite Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris), Brown University and CERN as the recipient of a Marie Curie grant. He is interested in aspects of holography, scattering amplitudes and bootstrap methods for conformal and quantum field theories.

Alessandro Vichi

Alessandro Vichi

Alessandro Vichi is a Research Professor at École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), where he also obtained his PhD in 2011. He worked at UC Berkeley (2011-2014) as a postdoctoral researcher and at CERN (2014-2016) as a fellow, before receiving the Professor Boursier grant from the Swiss National Science Foundation in 2016. Alessandro's current research focuses on exploring the structure of conformal field theories and their applications to particle physics and critical phenomena in condensed matter or statistical physics.

Sasha Zhiboedov

Sasha Zhiboedov

Sasha Zhiboedov is a Postdoctoral Researcher at Harvard University. He received his PhD from Princeton in 2014. Sasha’s research focuses on bootstrap approaches to CFTs and scattering amplitudes. His research is inspired by the AdS/CFT correspondence or, more generally, connections between gravitational theories and QFTs. Currently he explores properties of higher spin particles and their role in the emergence of local gravitational theories.