In theory: Welcome to the Theory Department
After almost ten years under the umbrella of the PH department, TH becomes again a department. In 2005, it was incorporated into the CERN Physics Department as the "Theory Unit". In 2016 it once again became an independent department, the "Theoretical Physics Department"
To this end, CERN-TH aims primarily to foster fundamental research in all fields of direct relevance for High Energy Physics, including cosmology, high-energy astrophysics, field and string theory. With the CERN-TH short-term visitor program, the series of CERN-TH Institutes, and a wide range of workshop activities, working groups and regular meetings, CERN-TH has flexible structures in place to facilitate the scientific exchange amongst theorists, and between theorists and experimentalists in the Laboratory and elsewhere. For the decisive coming years of LHC operation, these structures help to provide the worldwide HEP community with a forum that is well-suited for discussing the theoretical challenges of LHC data analysis and interpretation, for evaluating LHC results in a wider context including constraints from cosmology and astro-particle physics, and for coordinating contributions from theoretical High Energy Physics towards the formulation of concrete priorities for future experimental initiatives.
Theoreticians are an integral part of particle physics, providing experimentalists with a background to their research. Their work has always been a starting point for CERN physics – the "Group of Theoretical Studies" was created even before a location had been determined for CERN itself – showing physicists what and where they should be looking for the next discovery.
Over the coming weeks, the "In Theory" series will introduce you to the Theory department and give you a behind-the-scenes glimpse of what life is like for some of the individuals within it.
Starting this week with a photo essay introducing the Theory department at CERN and some of its theoreticians.