Hans Halvorson


Spring 2019: Introductory Logic

Summer 2019: Kierkegaard in Copenhagen. Applications for this course may be submitted through the Office of International Programs, beginning in November

Current research

What is the goal of science? What are the features that a good scientific theory ought to have, or ought not have? The most intuitive answers (e.g. the goal of science is to "find the truth") simply don't work. I'm trying to find better answers, drawing lessons from formal logic as well as from the particular sciences (especially physics). In particular, I've decided to take the contrarian gamble that Niels Bohr might have had at least one interesting idea, of lasting value, about what science could be. I'm also investigating the conceptual roots of Bohr's viewpoint, such as Kierkegaard's account of objectivity. ("No philosopher really understands what one means by the complementary description ... they did not see that it was an objective description." Bohr 1962)

Some writing

The logic in philosophy of science

From geometry to conceptual relativity (with Thomas Barrett)

Quine's conjecture on many-sorted logic (with Thomas Barrett)

Glymour and Quine on theoretical equivalence (with Thomas Barrett)

What scientific theories could not be

Foundations and philosophy (with Dimitris Tsementzis)

Cosmology and theology (with Helge Kragh)

A theological critique of the fine-tuning argument

To be a realist about quantum theory

Complementarity of representations in quantum mechanics

Reconsidering Bohr's reply to EPR

The Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen state maximally violates Bell's inequalities

Generic Bell correlation between arbitrary local algebras in quantum field theory