I am Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Michigan (my alma mater).

    My main interests within the field include philosophy of science, foundations of physics, moral philosophy and metaphysics.  My research is mainly focused on clarifying the ways in which scientific discoveries are described -- I see myself as investigating what science has discovered and how it can be justified.  My primary focus is on the ontological implications of dynamical symmetries, especially in quantum field theory.  Other topics of interest include string theory, quantum statistics, the structure of classical and relativistic spacetimes, antimatter, and the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics.

    I am also interested in the metaphysics of quantities, metametaphysics, ethical questions surrounding nuclear weapons and arms control, and in metaphysical and moral issues related to free will, responsibility, death and mortality.

EMAIL: djbaker -AT- umich -DOT- edu.





“Interpreting Supersymmetry.”  Forthcoming in Erkenntnis.

“Knox’s inertial spacetime functionalism (and a better alternative).”  Forthcoming in Synthese. [Journal copy.]

“Some Consequences of Physics for the Comparative Metaphysics of Quantity.”  Oxford Studies in Metaphysics 12 (2020): 75-112.

“From physical assumptions to classical and quantum Hamiltonian and Lagrangian particle mechanics,” with Gabriele Carcassi, Christine Aidala and Lydia Bieri.  Journal of Physics Communications 2 (2018): 045026.

“Does String Theory Posit Extended Simples?”  Philosophers’ Imprint 16 (2016): Issue 18.

“The Philosophy of Quantum Field Theory.”  Oxford Handbooks Online (2016): DOI 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199935314.013.33

“How is spontaneous symmetry breaking possible?  Understanding Wigner’s theorem in light of unitary inequivalence,”
with Hans Halvorson.  Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 44 (2013): 464-469.

The Conventionality of Parastatistics (2015, with Hans Halvorson and Noel Swanson), The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science. 66: 929-976.

Identity, Superselection Theory and the Statistical Properties of Quantum Fields (2013), Philosophy of Science 80: 262-285. [Journal copy.]

"The Experience of Left and Right" Meets the Physics of Left and Right (2012), Nous 46: 483-498.  [Journal copy.]

Broken Symmetry and Spacetime (2011), Philosophy of Science 78: 128-148. [Journal copy.]

Symmetry and the Metaphysics of Physics (2010), Philosophy Compass 5: 1157-1166. [Journal copy.]

Review of Richard Healey, Gauging What's Real (2010), Mind 119 (474): 490-494. [Journal copy.]

Antimatter (2010, with Hans Halvorson), British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 61: 93-121.  [Journal copy]

Against Field Interpretations of Quantum Field Theory (2009), British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 60: 585-609.  [Journal copy.]

Measurement Outcomes and Probability in Everettian Quantum Mechanics (2007). Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 38: 153-169. [Journal copy.]

Spacetime Substantivalism and Einstein's Cosmological Constant (2005). Philosophy of Science (PSA 2004 Proceedings) 72: 1299-1311.  [Journal copy.]


"Worldsheet Relationism for String Theory." University of Chicago, 2018

"Interpreting Supersymmetry."  University of Chicago, 2018

"Does String Theory Posit Extended Simples?"  University of Illinois Chicago, 2015

"Broken Symmetry and Spacetime,"  University of Western Ontario, 2009.