New Connections Between Physics and Number Theory


New Connections Between Physics and Number Theory

During the 20th century, interactions between geometers and theoretical physicists were revolutionary in both areas, leading to such unexpected developments as mirror symmetry and the impact of topological field theory on invariants of 4-manifolds. Another momentum is now developing around new connections between number theory and physics, mainly but not exclusively through the theory of automorphic forms. We have reached a time when contacts between number theorists and physicists have the potential for another revolution.

The purpose of this interdisciplinary workshop is to investigate connections between various fields of theoretical physics, in particular string theory and statistical models of crystals, and the theory of automorphic forms, mock modular forms and beyond. The non-perturbative structure of string theory has led to new uses of automorphic forms that have already appeared in number theory, as well as new exotic automorphic objects that have not yet been encountered.

This is an emergent research area with a lot of potential for cross-disciplinary collaborations with great benefit to both areas. Recent work has revealed, on the one hand, a profound significance of automorphic forms and automorphic representations for string scattering amplitudes and, on the other hand, an unexpected appearance of mock theta functions in answering key questions pertaining to quantum properties of black holes. In addition, statistical models of ice have recently appeared in connection with Eisenstein series on metaplectic groups, calling for some underlying structure that remains to be understood.

The workshop on New Connections Between Physics and Number Theory aims to bring together researchers working on a broad range of ideas and techniques in number theory and physics, all working in the beautiful setting of the medieval town of Pollica in Southwestern Italy (Cilento region). The workshop is scheduled for the dates of 5th to 16th of June 2023.

Location: The workshop will take place in Castello dei Principi Capano, see the map for also nearby restaurant suggestions.

Applications will close on February 28th 2023.

To get a feeling of the venue and spirit of the workshops, please watch the following promotional video featuring images of the workshop venue and of the town of Pollica from the 2019 Pollica Summer Workshop on “Mathematical and Geometric Tools for Conformal Field Theories".



Invited Speakers include: 

Francis Brown, University of Oxford, UK,

Alejandra Castro, University of Cambridge, UK,

Matthew Emerton, University of Chicago, USA,

Melissa Emory, Oklahoma State University, USA,

Amanda Folsom, Amherst College, USA,

Matthias Gaberdiel, ETH Zurich, Switzerland,

Wee Teck Gan, National University of Singapore, Singapore,

Terry Gannon, University of Alberta, Canada,

Rajesh Gopakumar, ICTS, India,

Kim Klinger-Logan, Kansas State University and Rutgers University, USA,

Stephen Kudla, University of Toronto, Canada,

Spencer Leslie, Boston College, USA,

Manish Patnaik, University of Alberta, Canada,

Boris Pioline, Sorbonne University, France,

Siddhartha Sahi, Rutgers University, USA,

Oliver Schlotterer, Uppsala University, Sweden,

Rudolfs Treilis, University of Durham, UK,

Don Zagier, MPI for Mathematics, Bonn, Germany,

Federico Zerbini, University of Oxford, UK.


Scientific and organizing committee:

Daniel Bump, Stanford University, USA,

Solomon Friedberg, Boston College, USA,

Michael B. Green, University of Cambridge, UK,

Jeffrey Harvey, University of Chicago, USA,

Axel Kleinschmidt, MPI for Gravitational Physics Potsdam, Germany,

Daniel Persson, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden,

Roberto Volpato, University of Padova and INFN, Italy,

Katrin Wendland, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.


Local organizing committee:

Paolo Facchi, University of Bari and INFN, Italy.

Sponsored by:

Comune di Pollica

CIG: Y323699BB1;     CUP: B29D20000060009