Message from YITP Director

Dear Colleagues,

On 1 April, 2016, we established a new research organization, the "Center for Gravitational Physics (CGP)", inside the Yukawa Institute for Theoretical Physics (YITP).

Since 1953, YITP has been contributing to the progress in physics as a unique institute which covers the whole areas of theoretical physics. In its early days, YITP played a central role in promoting astrophysics and biophysics in Japan. In relatively recent years, it played a crucial role in initiating systematic studies of gravitational waves in Japan, which will be surely one of the major topics in the 21st century astronomy. To strengthen theoretical studies in that area, we formed the Research Center for Gravitational Wave Physics in 2014. We decided to reform this center by expanding its role to include a much wider area of physics which may be characterized by the keyword "gravity".

Gravity, which is the oldest known force in nature, has been attracting renewed attention as an important subject of research in the 21st century. Not to mention the importance of its role in astrophysics as represented by the newly born gravitational wave astronomy, clarifying essential properties of gravity is considered not only to be the key to the formulation of quantum gravity such as string theory, but also to provide deeper understanding of basic phenomena in quantum theory such as quantum entanglement. Thus one may well anticipate the birth of a new paradigm of gravitational physics in the not-so-distant future.

In these circumstances, our new center, CGP, aims at developing gravitational physics under a new light of the 21st century by focusing on the two major themes; understanding the nature of gravity by studying various phenomena in the universe, and developing a new theoretical framework for fundamental physics based on (but not restricted to) studies of string theory and quantum gravity. For this purpose, we will collaborate with researchers and institutions from all over the world, and make CGP a base for research in gravitational physics in the wider sense.

We hope you will have occasions to join our activities at CGP, YITP. We always welcome your comments and suggestions.

April, 2017 Sinya Aoki