Lisbon Philosophy of Physics Seminars: Baptiste Le Bihan (18 May on Zoom)

On Wednesday, 18 May, Baptiste Le Bihan (University of Geneva) will give a talk titled “Composing and Causing Spacetime in Quantum Gravity” (abstract below).

 

The series of online seminars is organized in the context of the activities of the LanCog Research Group at the Centre of Philosophy of the University of Lisbon, and will focus on the foundations of quantum and spacetime physics.

 

The meeting will be online on Zoom (17:00-19:00 CEST). If you have not registered yet, you can do so here.

 

You can address any question to Andrea Oldofredi (aoldofredi@letras.ulisboa.pt).

 

ABSTRACT:
According to a number of approaches in quantum gravity spacetime does not exist fundamentally. Rather, spacetime exists by depending on another, more fundamental, non-spatiotemporal structure. A prevalent opinion in the literature is that this dependence should not be analysed in terms of composition. We should not say, that is, that spacetime depends on an ontology of non-spatiotemporal entities in virtue of having them as parts. But is that really right? On the contrary, I will argue that a mereological approach to dependent spacetime is not only viable, but promises to enhance our understanding of the physical situation. I will then discuss some of the roles that causality might play in these scenarios. Based on a collaboration with Sam Baron.