[MaFLa] Fw: Postdoctoral Positions in Philosophy of Mathematical-Physics (ERC Project)

Laszlo E. Szabo laszlo.e.szabo at gmail.com
Sun Sep 16 14:22:01 CEST 2012

Begin forwarded message:

Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2012 08:00:07 -0700 (PDT)
From: Gabriel Catren <gabrielcatren at yahoo.com.ar>
To: gabrielcatren at gmail.com
Subject: Postdoctoral Positions in Philosophy of Mathematical-Physics
(ERC Project)

Call for postdoctoral positions for working on the 
ERC (European Research Project) project
Philosophy of Canonical Quantum Gravity
Principal Investigator: Gabriel Catren


The European Research Council (ERC) project Philosophy of Canonical
Quantum Gravity announces one-year post-doctoral positions, with the
possibility of an extension depending on the final evaluation. The
profile of the searched candidate is that of a candidate with a strong
background in pure mathematics and mathematical physics interested in
the conceptual and mathematical foundations of theoretical physics.
Project description. This research proposal addresses from a
philosophical perspective one of the most important unsolved problem of
theoretical physics, namely the formulation of a quantum theory of
gravity. Quantum mechanics and Einstein's theory of gravity—i.e.
general relativity—are the two main revolutions of 20th century
physics. These theories have radically challenged and modified our
epistemological and ontological conceptions about time, space, motion,
matter, causality, physical objectivity, and the global structure of
the universe. However, the formulation of an unanimously accepted and
experimentally tested quantum theory of gravity capable of harmonizing
these new insights in a consistent synthesis remains—since 1930s—an
open problem. The absence of an experimental guidance for the
quantization of gravity, the conceptual nature of some of the
obstructions encountered by the different research programs, and the
philosophical origin and scope of the problems to which both general
relativity and quantum mechanics provided a provisional solution
explain why philosophy can play a fundamental role in helping to
accomplish this “unfinished revolution” (Rovelli). The general
objective of the present research proposal in philosophy of physics is
to address the main (interrelated) foundational issues raised by
canonical quantum gravity. To do so, this project depends on two
intermediate subprojects. The first subproject addresses some
foundational problems concerning space-time theories and gauge theories
in light of both the so-called gauge theories of gravity and the
generalized theories of gravity with torsion and/or non-metricity. The
second subproject addresses the philosophy of canonical quantization.
To do so, we analyze from a foundational perspective one of the most
elegant mathematical formalizations of canonical quantization, namely
the formalism, mainly developed by B. Kostant and J.-M. Souriau, named
geometric quantization. Profile of the position. The chosen candidate
is expected to work on one of the following subjects: .Theory of
gravitation of Einstein-Cartan and theory of Cartan’s
connections. .Construction of an interpretation of quantum mechanics in
the light of geometric quantization and gauge theories. .Geometric and
algebraic foundations of the notion of spinor. Scientific environement:
Laboratoire SPHERE (UMR 7219), Centre National de la Recherche
Scientifique (CNRS) – Université Paris Diderot, Paris, France.
Eligibility requirements: Eligible candidates must hold a PhD or
equivalent in philosophy, physics or mathematics. Application
Procedure: Applicants are invited to submit a dossier by email (in
English or French) including: · a cover letter explaining the
candidate’s research interests and her/his skills for contributing to
an interdisciplinary project at the intersection between philosophy,
physics, and mathematics. · a curriculum vitae including a publication
list; · university certification of the last candidates’ degree. · a
copy of PhD thesis and a sample of other relevant writings, published
or not; · the name and electronic address of one knowledgeable scholar
who could provide a recommendation letter if necessary. Scholars of all
nationalities are welcome to apply. For further information, please
contact Gabriel Catren: gabrielcatren at gmail.com. The dossier must be
addressed to the following electronic address: gabrielcatren at gmail.com.
Application deadline: Open until filled.
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