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GRW as an ontology of dispositions
Studies in History and Philosphy of Modern Physics
The paper argues that the formulation of quantum mechanics proposed by Ghirardi, Rimini and Weber (GRW) is a serious candidate for being a fundamental physical theory and explores its ontological commitments from this perspective. In particular, we propose to conceive of spatial superpositions of non-massless microsystems as dispositions or powers, more precisely propensities, to generate spontaneous localizations. We set out five reasons for this view, namely that (1) it provides for a clear sense in which quantum systems in entangled states possess properties even in the absence of definite values; (2) it vindicates objective, single-case probabilities; (3) it yields a clear transition from quantum to classical properties; (4) it enables to draw a clear distinction between purely mathematical and physical structures, and (5) it grounds the arrow of time in the time-irreversible manifestation of the propensities to localize.
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