CASIP Lecture Series #5

Title: Values and Perspectives in Physics

Speaker: Dennis Dieks (Utrecht University)

Chair: Dong Luo(South China University of Technology)


Shan Gao (Shanxi University)

Stefan Petkov (Beijing Normal University)

Weichang Wang (Institute of Philosophy, CASS)

Guolin Wu (South China University of Technology)

Time: Friday, 12th November 2021 4:30PM—6:30PM(UTC+8)

Online Platform: Zoom

Meeting ID: 489 550 5875

Zoom Address:

Language: English


It is an important philosophical insight that the practice of science is not governed by strict rules but in many instances involves value-dependent judgments, which may vary between, and even within, scientific subcommunities. In the talk we will focus on physics and its philosophy and consider several examples: perspective-dependent decisions concerning theory choice, judgments about the adequacy of explanations, and differences about when genuine understanding is attained. Interestingly, the resulting “fragmented” picture is paralleled by recent proposals within physics itself, according to which even descriptions of physical systems and their properties are perspective-dependent.

Organizer: Institute of Philosophy, Chinese Academy of Sciences(CASIP)


Dennis Dieks is a professor at the Descartes Centre for the History and Philosophy of the Sciences and the Humanities at Utrecht University, and a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. Dieks has proved the no-cloning theorem and is one of the proponents of the modal interpretation of quantum mechanics. He has also been in charge of many important international academic organizations and journals.