Modern physical theories are written in the language of mathematics. Therefore, a good practice to follow—according to many—for understanding what these theories tell us about the physical world is to look at the mathematical objects, properties, and spaces that are employed in their formulation. Inferring the nature of the physical world from the mathematical formalism is not straightforward however, and several questions remain open to debate. For instance, how should we characterize the status of mathematical entities and their relations with the physical ones? In what ways do they reveal the nature of the physical world? Such questions have been raised in debates across four philosophical fields: general philosophy of science, philosophy of physics, philosophy of mathematics, and metaphysics. They often aim to address the same issues, but from different perspectives and in different terms. In this workshop, we bring together philosophers working in these four areas to initiate a fruitful dialogue on these issues.
Participants: Arianna Borrelli (MECS, Leuphana University of Lüneburg) Radin Dardashti (University of Wuppertal) Neil Dewar (MCMP, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich) Hartry Field (New York University) Ladislav Kvasz (Czech Academy of Sciences) Casey McCoy (Stockholm University) Vít Punčochář (Czech Academy of Sciences) Davide Romano (University of Salzburg) Antonio Vassallo (University of Barcelona) Jo E. Wolff (King's College London)
Thursday, 30 May 2019
9.15 - 10.15 Arianna Borrelli: The materiality of physical-mathematical concepts: Angular momentum and its conservation laws 10.20 - 11.20 Radin Dardashti: Mathematics and the Limits of Physical Possibility
11.20 - 11.40 Break
11.40 - 12.40 Vít Punčochář: Are mathematical objects just useful fictions?
12.40 - 14.00 Lunch
14.00 - 15.00 Neil Dewar: Representation and Invariance 15.05 - 16.05 Jo E. Wolff: Quantitative and qualitative structures
16.05 - 16.25 Break
16.25 - 17.25 Antonio Vassallo: On the nomic status of Einstein field equations 17.30 - 18.30 Davide Romano: Does decoherence theory support the Many Worlds Interpretation of quantum mechanics?
Friday, 31 May 2019:
9.15 - 10.15 Casey McCoy: Ambient Randomness in the Foundations of Probability Theory 10.20 - 11.20 Ladislav Kvasz: Galileo, Descartes, Newton—Founders of the Language of Physics
11.20 - 11.30 Break
11.30 - 12.00 Roundtable Discussion