Djuna Croon (University of Sussex, United Kingdom)
I will discuss the appeal of pseudo-Goldstone bosons (pGBs) for the generation of scales in Early Universe cosmology. In particular, I will demonstrate how a pGB inflaton can solve the hierarchy problem of inflation (the tension between the Lyth bound and the inflationary scale as preferred by CMB anisotropies), while avoiding the problems with trans-Planckian scales that are typically associated with related models. The same mechanism can give rise to the dynamical generation of the electroweak scale through a composite Higgs, thus also addressing the EW hierarchy problem. I will discuss both inflation and reheating in this setup, and show how it naturally connects to both EW physics and a UV completion.