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ESI Programme and Workshop "Carrollian physics and holography"

April 1 - April 26, 2024

Aim of the programme

Carrollian physics and holography

Carrollian physics appeared for the first time out of a mathematical curiosity in a work of Lévy-Leblond: what if, instead of taking the usual non-relativistic limit of the Poincaré group where the speed of light c is taken to ∞, one considers the opposite limit, namely c→0? While the first limit gives rise to the familiar Galilean group, the second leads to the so-called Carroll group. In a Carrollian limit (c→0), the lightcones collapse along the time axis, which means that particles can no longer move and two spacetime events are causally disconnected. This absence of causality, as well as arbitrarinesses of time intervals, reminded Lévy-Leblond of Lewis Carroll's book Through the looking-glass, which is the origin for the name of this ultralocal limit of the Poincaré group.

While such spacetimes seem a priori to be too strange to be of any physical relevance, there has been recently a surge of interest in Carrollian physics. It is quite a remarkable fact that, indeed, Carrollian physics naturally appear in the context of the geometry of null surfaces and the associated Bondi-Metzner-Sachs symmetries, but also black hole horizons, inflationary cosmology, fluid/gravity and holographic correspondences, as well as limits of Einstein gravity.

The ESI programme is expected to foster further progress on the following developments:

  • Carrollian fluids
  • Flat space holography
  • Carrollian gravity theories
  • Lower-dimensional models

Relevance to the local community: Vienna hosts two major Universities where pertinent research in theoretical physics is performed, namely the University of Vienna (co-organiser Stefan Fredenhagen, local organizer Stefan Prohazka as well as additional faculty and postdocs) and TU Wien (co-organiser Daniel Grumiller, local organizer Adrien Fiorucci as well as additional faculty and postdocs). Apart from additional fostering of the research expertise in Carrollian physics and flat space holography, the ESI programme will also provide the means to introduce new students (master as well as Ph.D.) and young postdocs to these exciting and timely topics, while providing the means for discussions with leading experts in the research fields on which the ESI programme will focus.


The programme and workshop will take place at the Erwin-Schrödinger International Institute for Mathematics and Physics.

Here is practical info for guests.

Useful links

Infos about Vienna Graphical information (e.g. online map of Vienna)
Erwin Schrödinger Institute (ESI) Local map near ESI
Vienna Airport Austrian Railroad
University of Vienna Vienna University of Technology
Just for fun: Google Scholar results on "Carrollian physics and holography" Useful literature on Austria

Contact the organizers by e-mail

Andrea Campoleoni andrea.campoleoni at University of Mons
Laura Donnay laura.donnay at SISSA Trieste
Adrien Fiorucci adrien.fiorucci at TU Wien
Stefan Fredenhagen stefan dot fredenhagen at University of Vienna
Daniel Grumiller grumil at TU Wien
Stefan Prohazka sprohazk at University of Vienna

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