July 2010

AGENDA : In July 2010 The Archive plans/hopes to record the following events :

JULY 1st and JULY 5th 2010 : Ninth and Tenth of A Series of Bi-Weekly Research Seminars in The Philosophy of Mathematics organised by Prof. Jamie TAPPENDEN (Visiting Professor University of Paris) 

27th May  – 5th July 2010  Univ Paris 7  :  Batiment Condorcet  14:00 – 17:00  hrs

1st JULY 2010 : Salle 483A Malevich

5th JULY 2010 : Salle 646A Mondrian







JULY 6th – 9th 2010

Preliminary Informtion (January 2010) Full details of Scientific Program to follow. Arrangements are being made to video all Talks and place on this Archive.



Context :  Under the general management of Pr. B. Sidharth the FFP series of conferences about the “Fundamental Frontiers of Physics” has been dedicated, since its inception in the 90s, to interdisciplinary issues in fundamental physics..

Many more events to be added

Topics :

Energetic content of the Universe : Dark matter and dark energy

With the formulation of the theory of general relativity by Albert Einstein, the universe in the 20th century has become a physical object like many others, and cosmology has finally become a truly scientific discipline. Today, cosmology becomes a precious and unique experimental laboratory where fundamental theories of physics can be tested, from general relativity to the physics of elementary particles in energy ranges inaccessible to our Earth laboratories.

Among the several questions to which this science has to find an answer, one of the most important concerns the energetic content of the Universe. The exact knowledge of what the Universe is made of and in which amounts, would allow not only to determine its age, its past and future evolution, but also to address from a scientific point of view the question about its finiteness or its final end. The is because the evolutionary history of a universe for a given geometry admits only a particularly fixed energetic content. It is this equivalence between the energetic content and the space-time properties of the Universe that lead cosmologists to make some of the most mysterious and promising discoveries in the history of modern science: the existence of dark matter and dark energy.

Dark matter and dark energy are a challenge for astronomy both from an observational and theoretical point of view.

What is dark matter and dark energy? These two big questions, which for their complexity and depth, broad scientific impact and beyond are part of the subjects of the events that we aim to organize.


Particle physics and Fundamental Interactions.

Indeed, at present, the strong, weak, and electromagnetic interactions are accounted for within the framework of the standard model. This model correctly describes experiments up to the highest energies performed so far, and gives a complete description of the elementary particles and their interactions down to distances of the order of 10−18 m. Nevertheless, it has serious limitations, and attempts to overcome them and to unify the forces of nature have been only partly successful. Moreover, these attempts have left standing fundamental difficulties in reconciling gravitation and the laws of quantum mechanics. Today, we’ve two serious programs trying to understand this unification, String theory (full unification) and Loop Quantum Gravity.


From Intrication to Quantum Information and Quantum Gas

It has been recognised recently that the strange features of the quantum world could be used for new information transmission or processing functions such as quantum cryptography or, more ambitiously, quantum computing. These fascinating perspectives renewed the interest in fundamental quantum properties and lead to important theoretical advances. On the experimental side, remarkable advances have been achieved in quantum optics, solid state physics or nuclear magnetic resonance.


Astroparticle physics

Astroparticle studies elementary particles of astronomical origin, and their relation to astrophysics and cosmology. It is a relatively new field of research emerging at the intersection of particle physics, astronomy, and cosmology. Its rapid development has led to the design of new types of infrastructure. In underground laboratories or with specially designed telescopes, antennas and satellite experiments, astroparticle physicists employ new detection methods to observe a wide range of cosmic particles including neutrinos, gamma rays and cosmic rays at the highest energies. They are also searching for dark matter and gravitational waves.


Epistemology, History of Physics

Nowadays, similarly as in past, many fields of human activities are influenced by physics knowledge, research methods in physics, physics view of world. It relates also to culture in wide understanding, namely philosophy, morality, art, education etc. For example, one can say students and their teachers in all countries are training to see nature by ”physics eyes” (by science eyes, in general). So any changes in epistemological fundament of modern physics or in character of physics have to affect culture

Scientific Committee







  • Edouard Brezin, Ecole Normale Supérieure (ENS), Paris
  • A. Aspect, Research Director, Institut d’Optique
  • P. Binetruy, Director, APC Laboratory, Paris 7
  • Joseph Kouneiher, University of Nice and LUTH (Laboratoire Univers et THéories)
  • F. Combes, Observatoire de Paris, LERMA (Laboratoire d’Etudes du Rayonnement de la Matière en Astrophysique)
  • J. Iliopoulos, Ecole Normale Supérieure, Paris
  • Marc Lachièze-Rey, Paris 7 Denis Diderot University
  • J. A. Madore, University of Orsay
  • J.-J. Szczeciniarz, Paris 7 University









FFP11 local organizing committee



Opening speech will be made by Chair E. Brezin

Presentation of the FFP series: General purpose, History and Philosophy, by B. Sidharth.

Invited speakers 

Opening communications :

  • Gerard’t Hooft 
  • Anton Zeilinger
  • Roger Penrose (to be confirmed)
  1. Big Bang Cosmology / Dark Energy

    • Paul Steinhardt
    • Jean-Loup Puget
    • Ruth Durrer
  2. Dark Matter/Astroparticles

    • Pierre Fayet
    • Joseph Silk
    • Yannick Mellier
    • Pierre Salati
  3. Particle physics and Fundamental Interactions

    • Daniel Fournier
    • Costas Bachas
    • John Ellis
    • Christophe Salomon
  4. From Intrication to Quantum Information and Quantum Gas

    • Philippe Grangier
    • Michel Devoret
    • Jean Dalibard
    • Antoine Georges

Epistemology, History of Physics

  • John Stachel
  • Jeremy Butterfield
  • Michael Friedmann





See Announcement and List of Speakers below

Towards a Theory of Spacetime Theories

A Workshop at the Interdisciplinary Centre for Science and Technology Studies, Wuppertal University, Germany.

The construction of a (meta-)theory of scientific theories is surely at the very heart of the philosophy of science. However, many attempts in this direction have aimed to construct a theory of scientific theories per se, thereby neglecting that a theory in physics may be very different from one in biology, that even a theory in particle physics may be of a different structure than one in solid state physics. It thus seems sensible to restrict attention first to the development of a meta-theory of a more restricted set of scientific theories, for example to theories that share a domain of application.

A paradigm case is the class of spacetime/gravitation theories, developed as variants and rivals of Einstein‘s theory of General Relativity (GR). There has been some explicit work by physicists with the common aim of constructing a framework to systematise and compare theories of gravitation, some focusing on the experimental and some on the theoretical foundations of such theories. But none of these approaches has been looked at by philosophers. On the other hand, the relevance of recent philosophical and historical work on the foundations of spacetime theories (such as the role of formal vs substantive general covariance, the connection between symmetries and conservation laws, or the structure and history of mathematical extensions of GR) for the meta-theoretic project has not yet been taken into account either.

A meta-theory of spacetime theories would i) reveal insights about the specific theories by showing the similarities and differences for every member of the set of theories it covers, ii) deliver a framework for a class of theories that could be helpful as a blueprint to build other meta-theories; and iii) provide a higher-level viewpoint for judging which theory best describes nature.

The Interdisciplinary Centre for Science and Technology Studies at the University of Wuppertal, Germany, will host a workshop in order to bring together experts from physics and philosophy and history to discuss the topics mentioned above, in the hope to better understand spacetime and the theories describing it.

Speakers include:
Oliver Pooley (Oxford)
Eleanor Knox (London)
Harvey Bown (Oxford)
Erik Curiel (London)
Hilary Greaves (Oxford)
Jeroen van Dongen (Amsterdam)
Tilman Sauer (Caltech)
Dennis Dieks (Utrecht)
Claus Kiefer (Köln)
Jeremy Butterfield (Cambridge)
Dennis Lehmkuhl (Wuppertal)
Erhard Scholz (Wuppertal)
Clifford Will (St Louis)
Domenico Giulini (Hannover)
Adan Sus (Barcelona)
Chris Wuthrich (San Diego)
James Owen Weatherall (Irvine)
Adam Caulton (Cambridge)




22nd – 25th JULY 2010 : ABERDEEN/Scotland

Kings College Aberdeen Conference Centre


Full Details of Conference Program to be Added






Many more events to be added