Edward Witten is Professor Emeritus in the School of Natural Sciences at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. He is a researcher in string theory, quantum gravity, supersymmetric quantum field theories, and other areas of mathematical physics. Witten's work has also significantly impacted pure mathematics. In 1990, he became the first physicist to be awarded a Fields Medal by the International Mathematical Union, for his mathematical insights in physics, such as his 1981 proof of the positive energy theorem in general relativity, and his interpretation of the Jones invariants of knots as Feynman integrals. He is considered the practical founder of M-theory. Edward Witten’s work exhibits a unique combination of mathematical power and physics insight, and his contributions have significantly enriched both fields. He was awarded the ICTP Dirac Medal in 1985 for stimulating contributions to quantum field theory, particularly with regard to the implications of new kinds of anomalies. He has greatly contributed to the modern interest in superstrings as a candidate theory for the unification of all known physical interactions. Most recently, he has explored quantum duality symmetries of field theories and string theories, opening significant new perspectives on particle physics, string theory, and topology.
Abstract: Prof. Witten will explain in nontechnical language how string theory generalizes quantum field theory while eliminating the ultraviolet divergences and the ability to adjust coupling constants in an arbitrary fashion.
The Colloquium will be livestreamed at the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5m4PgjlswfQ
Refreshments will be served at the end of the Colloquium on the Leonardo Building Terrace at 15:30.
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