Propensities in Quantum Mechanics

Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Science (2006)

Mauricio Suárez
Complutense University of Madrid
I review five explicit attempts throughout the history of quantum mechanics to invoke dispositional notions in order to solve the quantum paradoxes, namely: Margenau’s latencies, Heisenberg’s potentialities, Popper’s propensity interpretation of probability, Nick Maxwell’s propensitons, and the recent selective propensities interpretation of quantum mechanics. I raise difficulties and challenges for all of them, but conclude that the selective propensities approach nicely encompasses the virtues of its predecessors. I elaborate on some of the properties of the type of propensities that I claim to be successful for quantum mechanics, and finish by briefly sketching out ways in which similar notions can be read into some of the other well-known interpretations of quantum mechanics.
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References found in this work BETA

Dispositions. [REVIEW]John W. Carroll - 2001 - Philosophical Review 110 (1):82-84.
Philosophical Theories of Probability.Donald Gillies - 2003 - Philosophical Quarterly 53 (210):132-134.

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Citations of this work BETA

The Best of Many Worlds, or, is Quantum Decoherence the Manifestation of a Disposition?Florian J. Boge - 2019 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 66:135-144.

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