• Register
PhysicsOverflow is a next-generation academic platform for physicists and astronomers, including a community peer review system and a postgraduate-level discussion forum analogous to MathOverflow.

Welcome to PhysicsOverflow! PhysicsOverflow is an open platform for community peer review and graduate-level Physics discussion.

Please help promote PhysicsOverflow ads elsewhere if you like it.


PO is now at the Physics Department of Bielefeld University!

New printer friendly PO pages!

Migration to Bielefeld University was successful!

Please vote for this year's PhysicsOverflow ads!

Please do help out in categorising submissions. Submit a paper to PhysicsOverflow!

... see more

Tools for paper authors

Submit paper
Claim Paper Authorship

Tools for SE users

Search User
Reclaim SE Account
Request Account Merger
Nativise imported posts
Claim post (deleted users)
Import SE post

Users whose questions have been imported from Physics Stack Exchange, Theoretical Physics Stack Exchange, or any other Stack Exchange site are kindly requested to reclaim their account and not to register as a new user.

Public \(\beta\) tools

Report a bug with a feature
Request a new functionality
404 page design
Send feedback


(propose a free ad)

Site Statistics

205 submissions , 163 unreviewed
5,075 questions , 2,226 unanswered
5,348 answers , 22,757 comments
1,470 users with positive rep
818 active unimported users
More ...

  Is there a background independent closed string field theory?

+ 8 like - 0 dislike

Analogous to the background independent open string field theory by Witten. If there isn't, what are the main stumbling blocks preventing its construction?

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
asked Oct 20, 2011 in Theoretical Physics by Squark (1,725 points) [ no revision ]

1 Answer

+ 8 like - 0 dislike

An original article is

  • Ashoke Sen, Barton Zwiebach, Quantum Background Independence of Closed String Field Theory (arXiv:hep-th/9311009)

An old spr comment by Sabbir Rahman gives a survey of the history of some of these developments.

More references are here.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
answered Oct 20, 2011 by Urs Schreiber (6,095 points) [ no revision ]
As far as I understand, Sen and Zweibach consider "usual" closed string theory, which is not manifestly background independent, and prove that the theories on different backgrounds are equivalent. However, Witten's theory uses the space of backgrounds (BCFTs) as a classical history space which is a manifestly background independent framework. The problem is that he considers BCFTs with different boundary behavior but the same worldsheet-bulk behavior. Apparently this is sufficient for the same reason ordinary open string field theory contains closed strings.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
However, one would like to have a closed string analogue, that is, a theory whose classical history space is the space of all CFTs. This would be framework with completely manifest background independence.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
Sure, but you asked "is there background independent CSFT?". The closest to *manifest* background invariance in CSFT that I am aware of is Sen, Zwiebach "Background Independent Algebraic Structures in Closed String Field Theory" ([arXiv:hep-th/9408053](http://arxiv.org/abs/hep-th/9408053))

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)

Your answer

Please use answers only to (at least partly) answer questions. To comment, discuss, or ask for clarification, leave a comment instead.
To mask links under text, please type your text, highlight it, and click the "link" button. You can then enter your link URL.
Please consult the FAQ for as to how to format your post.
This is the answer box; if you want to write a comment instead, please use the 'add comment' button.
Live preview (may slow down editor)   Preview
Your name to display (optional):
Privacy: Your email address will only be used for sending these notifications.
Anti-spam verification:
If you are a human please identify the position of the character covered by the symbol $\varnothing$ in the following word:
Then drag the red bullet below over the corresponding character of our banner. When you drop it there, the bullet changes to green (on slow internet connections after a few seconds).
Please complete the anti-spam verification

user contributions licensed under cc by-sa 3.0 with attribution required

Your rights