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On gauging finite subgroups

Yuji Tachikawa

SciPost Phys. 8, 015 (2020) · published 31 January 2020


We study in general spacetime dimension the symmetry of the theory obtained by gauging a non-anomalous finite normal Abelian subgroup $A$ of a $\Gamma$-symmetric theory. Depending on how anomalous $\Gamma$ is, we find that the symmetry of the gauged theory can be i) a direct product of $G=\Gamma/A$ and a higher-form symmetry $\hat A$ with a mixed anomaly, where $\hat A$ is the Pontryagin dual of $A$; ii) an extension of the ordinary symmetry group $G$ by the higher-form symmetry $\hat A$; iii) or even more esoteric types of symmetries which are no longer groups. We also discuss the relations to the effect called the $H^3(G,\hat A)$ symmetry localization obstruction in the condensed-matter theory and to some of the constructions in the works of Kapustin-Thorngren and Wang-Wen-Witten.

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Abelian symmetries Gauge theory

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