Large Grants
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Previous Programs

2018 Agency in the Physical World
Awardees; RFP download

2016 Physics of the Observer
Awardees; RFP download

2015 The Physics of What Happens
Awardees; RFP download

2013 Physics of Information
Awardees; RFP download

2010 The Nature of Time
Awardees; RFP download

2008 Foundational Questions in Physics and Cosmology
Awardees; RFP download

2006 Foundational Questions in Physics and Cosmology
Awardees; RFP download

Lucien Hardy
Perimeter Institute

Project Title

Operationalism, Agency, and Quantum Gravity

Project Summary

In 1915 Einstein completed the General Theory of Relativity. This was, perhaps, the most remarkable intellectual feat in history. How did he do this? I outline ten steps he took. The first seven take us to a general framework for physical theories (that the arena of physics is curved spacetime) and the last three give us the specific theory of General Relativity in this framework. Fast forward 103 years to today. The biggest problem in fundamental physics is to come up with a theory of Quantum Gravity. I believe we can solve this by following in Einstein's footsteps. I lay out an analogous path of ten steps. The first seven steps take us to a general framework for Quantum Gravity and the last three hold out the promise of giving a specific theory of Quantum Gravity. Guided in this way by Einstein's ghost, I hope we will finally obtain the next fundamental theory.

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