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  1. A Commentary on Robin Hendry’s Views on Molecular Structure, Emergence and Chemical Bonding.Eric Scerri - 2023 - In João L. Cordovil, Gil Santos & Davide Vecchi (eds.), New Mechanism Explanation, Emergence and Reduction. Springer. pp. 161 - 177.
    In this article I examine several related views expressed by Robin Hendry concerning molecular structure, emergence and chemical bonding. There is a long-standing problem in the philosophy of chemistry arising from the fact that molecular structure cannot be strictly derived from quantum mechanics. Two or more compounds which share a molecular formula, but which differ with respect to their structures, have identical Hamiltonian operators within the quantum mechanical formalism. As a consequence, the properties of all such isomers yield precisely the (...)
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  • Do molecules have structure in isolation? How models can provide the answer.Vanessa Seifert - 2022 - In Olimpia Lombardi, Juan Camilo Martínez & Sebastian Fortin (eds.), Philosophical Perspectives on Quantum Chemistry. Springer Cham. pp. 125–143.
    I argue that molecules may not have structure in isolation. I support this by investigating how quantum models identify structure for isolated molecules. Specifically, I distinguish between two sets of models: those that identify structure in isolation and those that do not. The former identify structure because they presuppose structural information about the target system via the Born- Oppenheimer approximation. However, it is an idealisation to assume structure in isolation because there is no empirical evidence of this. In fact, whenever (...)
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  • Interview with Olimpia Lombardi.Eric R. Scerri - 2022 - Foundations of Chemistry 25 (1):101-117.
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  • Chemical reduction and quantum interpretation: A case for thomistic emergence.Ryan Miller - 2023 - Foundations of Chemistry 25 (3):405-417.
    The debate between ontological reductionists and emergentists in chemistry has revolved around quantum mechanics. What Franklin and Seifert (BJPS 2020) add to the long-running dispute is an attention to the measurement problem. They contend that all three realist interpretations of the quantum formalism capable of resolving the measurement problem also obviate any need for chemical emergence. I push their argument further, arguing that the realist interpretations of quantum mechanics actually subvert the basis for reduction as well, by undercutting the idea (...)
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  • Decoherence, appearance, and reality in agential realism.Rasmus Jaksland - 2023 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 13 (2):1-18.
    This paper reconsiders what implications quantum decoherence has for Karen Barad’s agential realism. In contrast with the recent claim of Thomas Everth and Laura Gurney (2022), this paper argues that decoherence supports rather than defeats the holist, relational ontology of agential realism. Indeed, decoherence offers an explanation for how a quantum system can remain entangled and superposed in principle while it nevertheless in practice appears classical to a local observer. Decoherence shows why the appearance of classicality is not an objection (...)
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  • On the Ontological Status of Molecular Structure: Is it Possible to Reconcile Molecular Chemistry with Quantum Mechanics?Sebastian Fortin, Martín Labarca & Olimpia Lombardi - 2022 - Foundations of Science 28 (2):709-725.
    According to classical molecular chemistry, molecules have a structure, that is, they are sets of atoms with a definite arrangements in space and held together by chemical bonds. The concept of molecular structure is central to modern chemical thought given its impressive predictive power. It is also a very useful concept in chemistry education, due to its role in the rationalization and visualization of microscopic phenomena. However, such a concept seems to find no place in the ontology described by quantum (...)
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  • Is the problem of molecular structure just the quantum measurement problem?Sebastian Fortin & Olimpia Lombardi - 2021 - Foundations of Chemistry 23 (3):379-395.
    In a recent article entitled “The problem of molecular structure just is the measurement problem”, Alexander Franklin and Vanessa Seifert argue that insofar as the quantum measurement problem is solved, the problems of molecular structure are resolved as well. The purpose of the present article is to show that such a claim is too optimistic. Although the solution of the quantum measurement problem is relevant to how the problem of molecular structure is faced, such a solution is not sufficient to (...)
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  • Incoherent? No, Just Decoherent: How Quantum Many Worlds Emerge.Alexander Franklin - forthcoming - Philosophy of Science.
    The modern Everett interpretation of quantum mechanics describes an emergent multiverse. The goal of this paper is to provide a perspicuous characterisation of how the multiverse emerges making use of a recent account of (weak) ontological emergence. This will be cashed out with a case study that identifies decoherence as the mechanism for emergence. The greater metaphysical clarity enables the rebuttal of critiques due to Baker (2007) and Dawid and Th\'ebault (2015) that cast the emergent multiverse ontology as incoherent; responses (...)
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  • Finding Time for Wheeler-DeWitt Cosmology.Nick Huggett & Karim Thebault - manuscript
    We conduct a case study analysis of a proposal for the emergence of time based upon the approximate derivation of three grades of temporal structure within an explicit quantum cosmological model which obeys a Wheeler-DeWitt type equation without an extrinsic time parameter. Our main focus will be issues regarding the consistency of the approximations and derivations in question. Our conclusion is that the model provides a self-consistent account of the emergence of chronordinal, chronometric and chronodirected structure. Residual concerns relate to (...)
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