Advances in Theoretical and Mathematical Physics

Volume 21 (2017)

Number 7

Special Issue: Proceedings of the Strings 2016 Conference in Beijing

Guest Editors: J. Maldacena (Institute for Advanced Study), H. Ooguri (California Institute of Technology), H. Babak (Harvard University), S. Li (Tsinghua University), W. Song (Tsinghua University), and H. Lin (Tsinghua University)

Non-supersymmetric AdS and the swampland

Pages: 1787 – 1801



Hirosi Ooguri (Institute for Theoretical Physics, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, Cal., U.S.A.; and the Kavli Institute for Physics and Mathematics, Universe University of Tokyo, Kashiwa, Japan)

Cumrun Vafa (Center for the Fundamental Laws of Nature, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S.A.)


We propose to sharpen the weak gravity conjecture by the statement that, except for BPS states in a supersymmetric theory, the gravitational force is strictly weaker than any electric force and provide a number of evidences for this statement. Our conjecture implies that any non-supersymmetric anti-de Sitter vacuum supported by fluxes must be unstable, as is the case for all known attempts at such holographic constructions.

We would like to thank N. Arkani-Hamed, T. Dumitrescu, D. Harlow, I. Klebanov, J. Maldacena, G. Remmen, T. Rudelius, A. Sen, S. Shenker, A. Strominger, and E. Witten for discussions. The research of HO is supported in part by U.S. Department of Energy grant DE-SC0011632, by the Simons Investigator Award, by the World Premier International Research Center Initiative, MEXT, Japan, by JSPS Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research C-26400240, and by JSPS Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research on Innovative Areas 15H05895. HO also thanks the hospitality of the Aspen Center for Physics, which is supported by the National Science Foundation grant PHY-1066293, and of the the Center for Mathematical Sciences and Applications and the Center for the Fundamental Laws of Nature at Harvard University. The research of CV is supported by the NSF grant PHY-1067976.

Published 19 March 2018