See www.gravconstant.net/events.html for details.
We wish two of our PostDocs well, now they're embarking upon the next steps in their career. Martin King is starting with a DFG Eigene Stelle project—Deep Learning in Particle Physics: A Philosophical Analysis—at the Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy (LMU). Niels Martens is now a Marie Curie Fellow at the University of Utrecht (Freudenthal Institute & Descartes Center) with a project on the philosophy of dark energy, and will be a PostDoc at Harvard's Black Hole Initiative from Sept 2023, working on the philosophy of black holes and the social epistemology & governance structure of the Next Generation Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration. He will remain an associate member of the Lichtenberg Group in light of the Bonn/St. Andrews Network "The Gravitational Constant 1890-1915 – From the Local to the Universal".
The website for the new Gravitational Constant Network between the University of St. Andrews and the University of Bonn is now online: gravconstant.net.
Call for Participation: Online Working Group on the History and Philosophy of Contemporary Theoretical Physics
Our new working/reading group on the history and philosophy of contemporary physics is open for registration. Hosted by The Consortium for the History of Science, this group will help promote a network of scholars who are interested in studying foundational papers in the history and philosophy of modern theoretical physics (full group description is below).
In our first meeting, which will be held by zoom on Wednesday Oct 12th, we will read and discuss Weyl's 1918 Gravitation and Electricity.
Schedule, zoom links and resources are available after registration.
The group page for registration and updates is available here:
The working group will meet once a month to discuss both historical papers and recent work by its members. The initial focus of the group will be on the increased mathematization of theoretical physics in the 20th century, in particular its historical development and philosophical implications. The readings for the group will include primary resources associated with the development of general relativity, quantum theory, and quantum field theories. We will begin with the history of early unified field theories, and follow different threads in their subsequent development in the second half of the twentieth century. Just a few examples of issues that fall within the scope of the working group are the historical development of gauge theory, modified gravity, and grand unified field theory, as well as related philosophical and conceptual issues.
Our PostDoc Niels Martens and his co-author James Read have recently been interviewed by Prof. David Baker (Michigan) about their paper "Sophistry about symmetries?".
Call for abstracts for the annual conference of the Philosophy of Physics Group of the German Physical Society.
21 - 25 March 2022
The Philosophy of Physics Group (AG Phil) of the German Physical Society (DPG) invites submissions for its annual conference, which will take place within the framework of the annual conference of the DPG. Contributions to any topic in the philosophy of physics are welcome. A particular focus in this year will be the philosophical analysis of gravitational wave and black hole physics, and we particularly encourage submissions on this topic. The following speakers have already accepted the invitation to speak at the AG Phil sessions:
Juliusz Doboszewski (Bonn)
Isobel Falconer (St Andrews)
Peter Galison (Harvard)
Tushar Menon (Cambridge)
Lydia Patton (Virginia Tech)
Karim Thébault (Bristol)
The conference will take place 21 - 25 March 2022 and will be held entirely online. The DPG divisions for gravitational physics, particle physics, history of physics, and theoretical/mathematical physics, among others, also convene at the same conference. The conference will have many parallel sessions organised by the various DPG groups and divisions, and any attendee can freely jump between the different sessions on physics, its philosophy and history.
If you would like to present a paper, please submit an abstract of about 200 words by 21 January 2022 (ignore the stated 15 January 2022 abstract submission deadline on the website), using the online-form here.
For future updates, see here.
We are thrilled that Dr. Noah Stemeroff, former postdoctoral fellow in our gravitational wave project and former Heinrich Hertz fellow, has been successful at various grant applications, and has decided to take up a Humboldt fellowship, co-located at Bonn and Berlin. His Humboldt project, ''Mathematics or Physics? Idealism and the History of Gauge Field Theory'' will start in January 2022. Congratulations, Noah!
We're thrilled that Dr. Jamee Elder, collaborator and recurring visitor on our gravitational wave project and former Heinrich Hertz fellow, has won the 2021 Du Châtelet Prize in Philosophy of Physics for her paper ''On the 'direct detection' of gravitational waves''. The topic of the 2021 competition was "Measurement practices in the physical sciences: correlation, calibration and stabilization", with the selection committee consisting of Alisa Bokulich, Hasok Chang, Daniel Mitchell and Wendy Parker. Each winner receives $1000, will present their paper at a workshop to be held at Duke University (provisionally scheduled for April 7-9 2022), and is invited to have their paper considered for publication in the journal Studies in History and Philosophy of Science. Dr. Elder is our second Heinrich Hertz Fellow to receive the Du Châtelet Prize, following up on Dr. Josh Eisenthal who won the prize last year.
Dennis Lehmkuhl has been elected as the new chairperson of the Philosophy of Physics Group (AGPhil) of the German Physical Society (DPG). Philosophical reflection on gravitational waves and black holes will be the focus of the AGPhil conference 2022 in Heidelberg.
Oxford Mathematics Department hosts "Spacetime Singularities" Event with Sir Roger Penrose, Dennis Lehmkuhl and Melvyn Bragg
Image Credit for the Header: ESA/Hubble
Image in Main text: Dijedona Dani
Image in Main text: Dijedona Dani