Spacetime is as spacetime does

Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 64:39-51 (2018)
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Abstract

Theories of quantum gravity generically presuppose or predict that the reality underlying relativistic spacetimes they are describing is significantly non-spatiotemporal. On pain of empirical incoherence, approaches to quantum gravity must establish how relativistic spacetime emerges from their non-spatiotemporal structures. We argue that in order to secure this emergence, it is sufficient to establish that only those features of relativistic spacetimes functionally relevant in producing empirical evidence must be recovered. In order to complete this task, an account must be given of how the more fundamental structures instantiate these functional roles. We illustrate the general idea in the context of causal set theory and loop quantum gravity, two prominent approaches to quantum gravity.

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Citations of this work

Have we Lost Spacetime on the Way? Narrowing the Gap between General Relativity and Quantum Gravity.Baptiste Le Bihan & Niels Linnemann - 2019 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 65:112-121.
Thinking About Spacetime.David Yates - 2021 - In Christian Wüthrich, Baptiste Le Bihan & Nick Huggett (eds.), Philosophy Beyond Spacetime. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
String Theory, Loop Quantum Gravity and Eternalism.Baptiste Le Bihan - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 10:17.

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Physicalism, or Something Near Enough.Jaegwon Kim - 2005 - Princeton University Press.
Constructing the World.David J. Chalmers - 2012 - Oxford University Press.
After Physics.David Z. Albert - 2015 - Harvard University Press.
Quantum Gravity.Carlo Rovelli - 2007 - Cambridge University Press.

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