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Interventions and causality in quantum mechanics

Suárez, Mauricio (2013) Interventions and causality in quantum mechanics. Erkenntnis, 78 (S2). pp. 199-213. ISSN 0165-0106

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Identification Number: 10.1007/s10670-013-9509-5

Abstract

I argue that the Causal Markov Condition (CMC) is in principle applicable to the Einstein–Podolsky–Rosen (EPR) correlations. This is in line with my defence in the past of the applicability of the Principle of Common Cause to quantum mechanics. I first review a contrary claim by Dan Hausman and Jim Woodward, who endeavour to preserve the CMC against a possible counterexample by asserting that the conditions for the application of the CMC are not met in the EPR experiment. In their view the CMC is inapplicable to the EPR correlations—i.e. it neither obtains nor fails. The view is grounded upon the non-separability of the quantum state, and the consequent unavailability of interventions. I urge that whether interventions are available in EPR—and why—is a complex and contextual question that does not have a unique or uniform answer. Instead, I argue that different combinations of causal hypotheses under test and interpretations of quantum mechanics yield different answers to the question.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://link.springer.com/journal/10670
Additional Information: © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
Divisions: CPNSS
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
Q Science > QC Physics
Sets: Research centres and groups > Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Science (CPNSS)
Date Deposited: 05 Feb 2016 17:07
Last Modified: 20 May 2020 02:53
Projects: FFI2008-06418-C03-01, FFI2011-29834-C03-01
Funders: Spanish Government
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/65261

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