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Home > Archives > Previous years: Seminars > Seminars 2016-2017: archives > History and Philosophy of Physics 2016–2017

Axis History and Philosophy of Science of Nature

History and Philosophy of Physics 2016–2017

Organizers: Nadine de Courtenay,
Olivier Darrigol, Sara Franceschelli, Jan Lacki

The seminar is designed as a place of exchange between historians of physics, philosophers of physics, physicists and students in relevant disciplines. Although the program this year has no specific theme, it reflects the interest of the organizers for the questions that drive us to cross disciplinary boundaries: between physics and philosophy, history and philosophy, between theoretical construction and experience, between physics and other sciences.

To current year. Archives:
previous to 2008-2009,
2008-2009, 2009-2010, 2010-2011,
2011-2012, 2012-2013,2013-2014,
2014-2015, 2015-2016, 2016-2017,

PROGRAM 2016-2017
The seminar is held from 5pm to 7pm in room 483A-Malevitch, Condorcet building,
4, rue Elsa Morante, University Paris Diderot (previously Paris 7). Map.

October 11
Christian Joas (Université Ludwig Maximilian, Munich)
Quantum many-body physics in the 1950s.

November 22
Andreas Hüttemann (University of Cologne)
Causal explanation, metaphysical explanation and the part-whole-relation.

January 10, 2017
Jos Uffink (University of Minnesota)
Schrödinger’s work on entanglement and the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen paradox before 1935.

January 17
Jean Seidengart (University of Paris-Ouest Nanterre)
Duhem et les limites de son phénoménisme : la théorie physique peut-elle se contenter de « sauver les phénomènes » ?

January 24
Martin Niss (University of Roskilde)
A Mathematician doing physics: Mark Kac and phase transitions in the 1960s.

March 14
Tilman Sauer (University Johannes Gutenberg, Mainz)
The Stern-Gerlach experiment revisited.

March 21
Daniel Jon Mitchell (University of Aix-la- Chapelle)
"The etherealisation of common sense"? J.D. Everett, James Thomson and nineteenth-century mathematics of measurement.

June 13
Eran Tal (McGill University, Canada)
Measurement, Computer Simulation and Observational Grounding.
Recent studies have argued that, under certain circumstances, a computer simulation can produce results that are as evidentially reliable as the results of calibrated measurement procedures (Morrison 2009; Parker 2015; Lusk 2016). A common objection is that measurement results are closer to raw observations than simulation results, where ‘closeness’ is understood in terms of causal connection, structure preservation, or inferential simplicity. I show that none of these senses of ‘closeness’ entail the supposed epistemic privilege of measurement. Building on recent work by Bas van Fraassen (2008; 2012) and Kent Staley (2012), I propose a novel view of the observational grounding of measurement that appeals to coherence between theory and instrumentation. According to this view, nothing in principle prevents computer simulations from attaining a level of evidential reliability similar to that of calibrated measurement procedures, but in practice very few simulations can currently be said to attain this level.