Eleanor Knox

Spacetime Functionalism


Many (perhaps all) concepts in science are functional, but the idea that we should conceive of spacetime as whatever fills some functional role has not been much explored. Nonetheless, a functional conception of spacetime seems to be required by some theories of quantum gravity in which spacetime is non-fundamental. I'll also argue that functionalism is helpful in the context of classical spacetime theories; it has the potential to dissolve some old problems. Iíll advocate a particular kind of spacetime functionalism inspired by the work of Harvey Brown, and look at some consequences of this kind of spacetime functionalism for old metaphysical debates.

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