[SydPhil] Luke Barnes: Fine-tuning and probability Thursday @ 3.00

Kristie Miller kristie_miller at yahoo.com
Tue May 30 16:49:28 AEST 2017

Dear all, this current Thursday’s current projects seminar (the Muniment room, 3.00) will be Luke Barnes giving the following paper:

Title: Fine-Tuning and probability

Abstract: My work as a cosmologist has touched on an interesting philosophical problem, on that has been discussed in the philosophical literature. Fine-tuning in physics and cosmology is often used as evidence that a theory is incomplete. Of particular interest is the fine-tuning of the universe for life, which suggests that our universe’s ability to create physical life forms is improbable and in need of explanation by, perhaps, a multiverse. This claim has been challenged on the grounds that the relevant probability measure cannot be justified because it cannot be normalized, and so small probabilities cannot be inferred. I will discuss how fine-tuning can be formulated within the context of Bayesian theory testing (or model selection) in the physical sciences, and how normalizability problems might be avoided.

All welcome

Associate Professor Kristie Miller
Senior ARC Research Fellow
Joint Director, the Centre for Time
School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry and
The Centre for Time
The University of Sydney
Sydney Australia
Room S212, A 14

kmiller at usyd.edu.au
kristie_miller at yahoo.com
Ph: +612 9036 9663

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