Thematic Cluster A: Change in the theoretical foundations of physics
As much as the Standard Model provides a stunningly precise description of all data in the energy range up to several hundred GeV, there are plenty of features that call for a more encompassing theory. The firm belief of the physics community in the existence of a better theory is, to a large extent, not determined by experimental observations contradicting the standard theoretical framework, but instead by conceptual arguments. Thematic Cluster A investigates concepts and methods shared by all extensions of the Standard Model, as well as different ways in which this model landscape can be partitioned according to different aims and principles. What these aims and principles have in common is the striving for simpler and more encompassing theories.