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    Emily Adlam (Cambridge): “Generalized Probabilistic Theories as Structural Realism”

Emily Adlam (Cambridge): “Generalized Probabilistic Theories as Structural Realism”

8 March 2021|

 

Emily Adlam (Cambridge): “Generalized Probabilistic Theories as Structural Realism”

In the field of quantum foundations there is a thriving research programme which involves placing quantum mechanics in a wider space of operationally defined theories in order to gain insight into its structure. There are various existing philosophical analyses of this research framework, but most have a strongly instrumentalist […]

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    Ulrich Meyer (Colgate): “Topology and Action at a Distance”

Ulrich Meyer (Colgate): “Topology and Action at a Distance”

16 February 2021|

 

Ulrich Meyer (Colgate): “Topology and Action at a Distance”

This paper presents a novel argument against the possibility of action at a distance, with realism about space-time topology as its main premise.

 

Ulrich Meyer is a Professor or Philosophy at Colgate University. His research interests include metaphysics, logic, philosophy of science and the philosophy of time.

Misinformation (Forum for Philosophy)

4 February 2021|

 

Misinformation 

Information may be power, but misinformation appears to be usurping the throne. From COVID-19 to QAnon, misinformation is more ubiquitous and more dangerous than ever. But why is it so much more attractive to so many? Are there factors that make misinformation more (or less) likely to be believed? What draws people into the world of conspiracy […]

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    Miklós Rédei (LSE): “On the Tension Between Physics and Mathematics”

Miklós Rédei (LSE): “On the Tension Between Physics and Mathematics”

1 February 2021|

 

Miklós Rédei (LSE): “On the Tension Between Physics and Mathematics”

Because of the complex interdependence of physics and mathematics their relation is not free of tensions. The talk looks at how the tension has been perceived and articulated by some physicists, mathematicians and mathematical physicists. Some sources of the tension are identified and it is claimed that the […]

Neil Dewar (Munich): “On Absolute Units”

7 December 2020|

 

Neil Dewar (Munich): “On Absolute Units”

What is the best way to characterise the intrinsic structure of physical quantities? Field’s program shows one approach (that also delivers a nominalist treatment of such quantities); in this talk, I outline how group-theoretic methods can deliver a somewhat simpler, although non-nominalist, way of doing this for scalar and vector quantities. I […]

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    Chrysovalantis Stergiou (The American College of Greece): “On Empirical Underdetermination of Physical Theories in C*Algebraic Setting”

Chrysovalantis Stergiou (The American College of Greece): “On Empirical Underdetermination of Physical Theories in C*Algebraic Setting”

30 November 2020|

 

Chrysovalantis Stergiou (The American College of Greece): “On Empirical Underdetermination of Physical Theories in C*Algebraic Setting”

Empirical underdetermination of physical theories by observational data lies at the heart of the debate over scientific realism. Antirealists of different strands contend that if observation cannot determine the state of a physical system then to talk about a uniquely defined state […]

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    Jonathan Birch (LSE): “Science and policy in extremis: the UK’s initial response to COVID-19”

Jonathan Birch (LSE): “Science and policy in extremis: the UK’s initial response to COVID-19”

11 November 2020|

 

Jonathan Birch (LSE): “Science and policy in extremis: the UK’s initial response to COVID-19”

For those of us interested in developing norms for effective scientific advising, the SAGE minutes (59 sets of which are now publicly available) are a valuable resource. Drawing on these minutes, I consider the wider lessons for norms of scientific advising that can be […]

The Musical Mind (Forum for Philosophy)

4 November 2020|

 

The Musical Mind (Forum for Philosophy)

Music is thought to have played an important role in human evolution, but how far back does it go? What role did it play in the evolution of the mind? Does music today have anything in common with music in prehistory? And is the ability to hear music uniquely human or something we share with […]

Anti-vaxxers & Other Sceptics (Forum for Philosophy)

28 October 2020|

 

Anti-vaxxers & Other Sceptics (Forum for Philosophy)

Will a future COVID vaccine be undermined by anti-vaxxers? What are the causes of declining vaccination rates? Why does this medical scepticism persist, and how might it be tackled? Or might there be times when scepticism is justified? And if so, how are we to determine when we should and when […]

Marius Backmann (LSE): “Time for Freedom”

27 October 2020|

 
Marius Backmann (LSE): “Time for Freedom”
Views on free will are classically classified along their compatibility with determinism. Accounts that require a power to do otherwise require the existence of alternative future possibilities, which are taken to be incompatible with determinism. I argue that determinism does not automatically imply that the future is not settled, and neither does […]