Topics in Holography,
Supersymmetry and Higher Derivatives

Bernard de Wit

Deformed gauged SO(8) supergravities and their possible embedding in M-theory

There exists a continuous one-parameter family of gauged SO(8) supergravities. Possible eleven-dimensional origins of this phenomenon are explored. Taking the original proof of the consistency of the truncation of 11D supergravity to SO(8) gauged supergravity as a starting point, a number of critical issues is discussed, such as the preferred electric-magnetic duality frame in four dimensions and the existence of dual magnetic gauge fields and related quantities in eleven dimensions. Some of those issues are resolved but others seem to point to obstructions in embedding the continuous degeneracy in 11D supergravity.

While the final outcome of these efforts remains as yet inconclusive, several new results are obtained. Among those is the full non-linear ansatz for the seven-dimensional flux expressed in terms of the scalars and pseudoscalars of 4D supergravity, valid for both the S^7 and the T^7 truncations without resorting to tensor-scalar duality.

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