|I am Assistant 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 quantum statistics, the structure of classical and relativistic spacetimes, antimatter, and the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics.
I am also interested in metaphysical and moral issues related to free will, responsibility, death and mortality.
My dissertation, An Ontological
Study of Quantum Fields and Their Symmetries, was
supervised by Hans
Halvorson at Princeton.
In 2010 I received the Cushing
Prize in History and Philosophy of Physics.
EMAIL: djbaker -AT- umich -DOT- edu.
Identity, Superselection Theory and the Statistical Properties of Quantum Fields, forthcoming in Philosophy of Science.
"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.]
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.]
RECENT AND UPCOMING TALKS
|"Some Consequences of Physics for the Comparative
Metaphysics of Quantity," Department of Philosophy,
University of Miami, March 8, 2012.
"Some Consequences of Physics for the Comparative Metaphysics of Quantity," Carolina Metaphysics Workshop, June 2012.
My 2009 talk "Broken Symmetry and Spacetime" at the University of Western Ontario can be viewed on streaming video here.
WORK IN PREPARATION
|Unless otherwise noted these are drafts of work in
progress, so don't cite without permission (as if anyone
would want to, ha ha). Comments are most welcome.
Some Consequences of Physics for the Comparative Metaphysics of Quantity
The Conventionality of Parastatistics (with Hans Halvorson and Noel Swanson)
How is Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking Possible? (with Hans Halvorson)