Topology Seminar (Introductory Talk): Introdution to fully extended topological field theories and the Cobordism Hypothesis

Seminar | March 1 | 2:10-3 p.m. | 736 Evans Hall

 Claudia Scheimbauer, Max Planck

 Department of Mathematics

Atiyah and Segal's axiomatic approach to topological and conformal quantum field theories provided a beautiful link between the geometry of "spacetimes" (cobordisms) and algebraic structures. Combining this with the physical notion of "locality" led to the introduction of the language of higher categories into the topic. In this talk I will give an introduction to topological field theories and the Cobordism Hypothesis. I will discuss how dualizability conditions arise and give a gentle introduction to higher categories, using cobordisms as our main example.