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Contextual Emergence Of Physical Properties

R. C. Bishop, G. Ellis
Published 2020 · Physics

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Contextual emergence was originally proposed as an inter-level relation between different levels of description to describe an epistemic notion of emergence in physics. Here, we discuss the ontic extension of this relation to different domains or levels of physical reality using the properties of temperature and molecular shape (chirality) as detailed case studies. We emphasize the concepts of stability conditions and multiple realizability as key features of contextual emergence. Some broader implications contextual emergence has for the foundations of physics and cognitive and neural sciences are given in the concluding discussion. Relevant facts about algebras of observables are found in the appendices along with an abstract definition of Kubo-Martin-Schwinger states.
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