Time Symmetry Conference

Time Symmetry: A Unified Approach.

A two-day international conference on the philosophy of time symmetry.

Centre for Time, University of Sydney
Quadrangle, Room S401 [map]
August 29-30, 2013

*Registration is now closed*

The underlying laws of physics are largely symmetric in time, and yet time-asymmetric concepts are pervasive throughout different areas of philosophical study. For instance, causes are believed to precede their effects in time and not vice versa, our knowledge of the past differs in form from our knowledge of the future, we believe we can influence the future but not the past, we dread or look forward to future events but not past events, etc. This conference looks at time symmetries and asymmetries in physics, causation, probability and agency, and their commonalities.

Schedule. [Download PDF]

Thursday 29 August

  • 10:00–11:15. Huw Price (Cambridge). “Bananaman and the Ultimate Contingency”
  • 11:15–11:45. Coffee break.
  • 11:45–13:00. Alison Fernandes (Columbia). “The Time Asymmetry of Agency”
  • 13:00–14:30. Lunch break.
  • 14:30–15:45. Matt Farr (Sydney). “On the ‘Initialness’ of Initial Conditions”
  • 15:45–16:15. Coffee break.
  • 16:15–17:30. Toby Handfield (Monash). “Genealogical explanations of our temporally asymmetric concepts”

Friday 30 August

  • 10:00–11:15. Antony Eagle (Adelaide). “The Past Can Be Changed”
  • 11:15–11:45. Coffee break.
  • 11:45–13:00. Phil Dowe & Gerard Milburn (Queensland). “Superposed Temporal Order”
  • 13:00–14:30. Lunch break.
  • 14:30–15:45. Peter Evans (La Trobe). “Action Principles and Teleology: is Lagrangian mechanics telling us something about the world?”
  • 15:45–16:15. Coffee break.
  • 16:15–17:30. Craig Callender (UCSD). “Thank Goodness That Conference is Over: Explaining Tensed Temporally Asymmetric Biases”

The conference is hosted by the Centre for Time, University of Sydney, and is sponsored by the School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry, University of Sydney.

Register Attendance.

Registration is now closed.

For further information, please contact Matt Farr or Sam Baron.

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