Probability in modal interpretations of quantum mechanics


Authors
Dennis Dieks
Utrecht University
Abstract
Modal interpretations have the ambition to construe quantum mechanics as an objective, man-independent description of physical reality. Their second leading idea is probabilism: quantum mechanics does not completely fix physical reality but yields probabilities. In working out these ideas an important motif is to stay close to the standard formalism of quantum mechanics and to refrain from introducing new structure by hand. In this paper we explain how this programme can be made concrete. In particular, we show that the Born probability rule, and sets of definite-valued observables to which the Born probabilities pertain, can be uniquely defined from the quantum state and Hilbert space structure. We discuss the status of probability in modal interpretations, and to this end we make a comparison with many-worlds alternatives. An overall point that we stress is that the modal ideas define a general framework and research programme rather than one definite and finished interpretation.
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DOI 10.1016/j.shpsb.2006.05.005
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References found in this work BETA

A Subjectivist’s Guide to Objective Chance.David K. Lewis - 1980 - In Richard C. Jeffrey (ed.), Studies in Inductive Logic and Probability, Volume II. Berkeley: University of California Press. pp. 263-293.
Interpreting the Quantum World.Jeffrey Bub - 1998 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 49 (4):637-641.
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Quantum Probability From Subjective Likelihood: Improving on Deutsch's Proof of the Probability Rule.David Wallace - 2007 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 38 (2):311-332.

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Citations of this work BETA

Interpreting the Modal Kochen–Specker Theorem: Possibility and Many Worlds in Quantum Mechanics.Christian de Ronde, Hector Freytes & Graciela Domenech - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 45:11-18.
A Modal-Hamiltonian Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics.Olimpia Lombardi & Mario Castagnino - 2008 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 39 (2):380-443.

View all 14 citations / Add more citations

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