Kurt Hinterbichler is a theoretical physicist interested in the encompassing aspects of effective field theory, early universe cosmology, higher spins, extra dimensions/brane worlds, modified gravity and screening mechanisms.
Kurt studies the structure of effective field theories, the primary tool with which to attack problems when a full underlying theory is not known or is too difficult to solve. He has been active in constructing and studying effective theories that possess interesting and novel features and that may have relevance during the very early or late universe.
One specific area of interest is massive gravity and higher spins, which is part of a larger program to explore the space of possibilities of effective field theories consistent with established principles, with an eye towards important open questions such as the cosmological constant naturalness problem.
Another central area of Kurt's research is early universe cosmology, including the study of inflation and alternatives to inflation. Inflation is the leading paradigm of the early universe, and he is particularly interested in the consequences of non-linearly realized symmetries that lead to general and powerful consistency relations among observables. Kurt has also been active in the development of novel alternative theories of the very early universe, and in the ways that they may be distinguished from inflation.