Georgios Papathanasiou
Staff Scientist
DESY Theory Group
Notkestrasse 85
Hamburg 22607, Germany

Office: 202, 2a| Phone: +49 (0)40 8998 2412| Email: georgios.papathanasiou[at]


I am a theoretical physicist working at the Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron since April 2017. Before coming here, I held postdoctoral positions at SLAC, LAPTh Annecy (also visiting scientist at CERN), and the University of Florida. I originally got my PhD from Brown University in 2011.

More on my academic path can be found in my CV.


My research focuses on Quantum Field Theory, String Theory, the relation between the two, and their fruitful interplay with contemporary mathematics. Performing explicit computations of important physical quantities at weak and strong coupling, and exploring their results to establish and exploit connections with new mathematical structures, lies at the core of my approach.

In particular, I have achieved significant contributions in the study of quantities such as anomalous dimensions, string state energies, Wilson loops, and more recently scattering amplitudes, which form a bridge between theory and experiment. To this end, I have employed and continue to further develop a wealth of complementary methods, ranging from gauge/string duality and integrability, to lattice discretization, and the exploitation of the expected analytic behavior of the relevant physical quantity. The latter also enjoys certain remarkable connections to tropical geometry and cluster algebras.

Ultimately, my research aims towards an all-loop solution of an interacting, four-dimensional gauge theory, for the simplest example of planar, maximally supersymmetric Yang-Mills theory. It is very likely that along the way, the new insights gained and computational tools built, will also find applications to the real world of elementary particles, and their interactions.

Selected Publications

Full list available on INSPIRE.

Selected Presentations

Selected Distinctions & Grants


I greatly enjoy transferring knowledge, and during my PhD I had the chance to be a teaching assistant for many undergraduate courses ranging from Modern Physics to Classical Mechanics or Electromagnetism. The experience that shaped my teaching philosophy was my collaboration with Professor Leon Cooper on the design and teaching of an interdisciplinary course exploring the relation of physics and art.

My interest in teaching has also led me to attend the Teaching Certificate I & III programmes at Brown University's Sheridan Center for Teaching & Learning. After my PhD, I had the opportunity to give a specialized course on Amplitudes & Symbols, and also give guest lectures in graduate Quantum Mechanics I, Quantum Field Theory II and Introduction to Supersymmetry and Supergravity. More recently, I have taught part of the 2018 String Steilkurs graduate-level intensive course at DESY, as well as the Spring 2020 MSc course Quantum Field Theory II at the University of Hamburg, receiving excellent evaluations.