Workshop 2: CFT, topology, and information

2-4 November 2011

[Click here to download the Workshop 2 poster]


For the past fifty years we have classified states of matter by their broken symmetries. This so-called Landau paradigm identifies phases by their local order parameters: for example, describing a ferromagnet in terms of its local magnetization, or a superfluid in terms of its local quantum phase-order parameter.

However, in the last few years it has become clear that there are condensed matter systems which have so-called topological order which is beyond this classic Landau description. These systems are instead sensitive to topology: the topology of the manifold that they live on, and the topology space-time knots formed by the motion of their excitations. Rather remarkably the deep mathematical structure of these topological states of matter is well described by conformal field theories and their related topological quantum field theories.

The main purpose of this component of the workshop is to study this connection in the context of condensed matter systems. Major subjects of interest will be quantum Hall states and topological lattice models.

Other topics will include anyons and topological quantum computers, as well as information theoretical aspects.

Confirmed participants for theme 2

Physicists: E. Ardonne, P. Fendley, N. Read, K. Schoutens, G. Sierra, S. Simon
Mathematicians: F. Costantino, L. Funar


E. Ardonne: Interacting anyons
L. Funar: Introduction to topological quantum field theory
N. Read: The fractional quantum Hall effect

Workshop programme

[Click here to download the Workshop 2 schedule]