I am a theoretical cosmologist. My research is aimed at the most fundamental questions about the universe: what is the mechanism that set the big bang initial conditions? what is the universe composed of? and how will it be changing in the future? I use the tools of both general relativity and quantum field theory to address these problems. More specifically, I have been studying different models of the very early universe with the aim of ultimately developing an improved cosmology that provides an explanation of observational data.
Currently, I am an Associate Research Scientist at the Columbia Center for Theoretical Physics. My research is funded by the Simons Foundation — I am part of the Origins of the Universe Initiative as a Principal Investigator of the Cosmological Bounces and Bouncing Cosmologies program. Before coming to Columbia, I held the inaugural John A. Wheeler Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Princeton Center for Theoretical Science (PCTS) from 2014-17.
I completed my doctoral dissertation at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (a.k.a. Albert Einstein Institute) in 2014. The last two years of my PhD studies, I have been supported by prize fellowships that enabled me to conduct research abroad; I was the Fritz Thyssen Fellow at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics during 2012-3 and spent the academic year 2013-4 at the Physics Department of Princeton University.
I wrote another, award-winning PhD thesis at Munich University in 2010, studying philosophical implications of quantum physics. The Philosophy of Science remains an interest. Besides my research in Cosmology, I am actively participating in the dialogue with Philosophy and the Humanities in general.