The Foundation of Reality: Fundamentality, Space and Time
Venue: MBI Auditorium, Corpus Christi College, Oxford
It has traditionally been assumed that reality is fundamentally spatiotemporal; at the most basic level of description, space and time provide the background for the building blocks of our world. Recently, however, this assumption has been challenged from various directions. For example, some candidate theories of quantum gravity appear to treat spacetime as “effective” or “emergent”; this raises philosophical questions about the status of spacetime. Meanwhile, some metaphysicians have challenged the assumption that there even is a most fundamental level to be found. Others demur, defending the traditional view that space and time must be part of any description of fundamental reality.
The aim of this conference is to bring together leading metaphysicians and philosophers of physics working on these issues to allow for meaningful dialogue and fruitful interaction. By doing so, we hope to clarify the prospects for alternatives to the traditional view of a fundamental reality that includes space and time.