Why do particle theorists like supersymmetry?

Ilarion Melnikov

One of the most promising ideas in high energy particle physics is supersymmetry---a symmetry relating bosonic and fermionic degrees of freedom. Why is the idea of supersymmetry so appealing, despite there being not a shred of experimental evidence for it? In addition to its mathematical appeal, supersymmetry provides particularly simple resolutions to a number of important questions in high energy particle physics.  After an introduction to supersymmetry, I will review some of these questions as well as the answers provided by supersymmetry. Next, I will discuss how the (non-supersymmetric) standard model might arise as the low energy limit of a supersymmetric theory, and if there is time, I will briefly talk about the relation between supersymmetry and string theory.

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