Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy (MCMP)

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Reading Groups

General Philosophy of Science

The group will start by reading a short classic book by Michael Friedman, "Dynamics of reason" (2001). The core of the book is about Friedman's theory of a priori reasoning in science, but it brings relevant insights to many general issues, such as conceptual change in science, the structure of scientific theories, the relationship between philosophy, the sciences, and their history, etc. Reading the book will take four sessions. After that, participants will make decisions about which topic(s) they want to explore, depending on both their individual interests and connections with the book. Some directions may include: objectivity in science, contemporary models of scientific change, the relationship between scientific theories and scientific practice, etc.

The reading group meets every second Wednesday at 2 pm, in Schellingstr. 5 - 204 2.OG (20). If you would like to attend, please contact Michele Luchetti (

Natural Science and Philosophy of Nature in the Middle Ages

Although the reading group is held in german, english-speaking participants are welcome to join (the texts are also available in english).

The reading group takes place on Thursday, starting 2pm, in Leopoldstr. 44 / Room 401 (4th floor).

For further information, please contact Dr. Daniel A. Di Liscia

More information (in german) can be found here.

Making and Breaking Theories: Applying Physical Models

On Saturday June 3rd, there will be a one-day reading group and discussion workshop on the application of physical models, where we will discuss one paper by each of Lydia Patton (Virginia Tech), Erik Curiel (MCMP), and Patricia Palacios (MCMP), as well as receiving a talk by Charlotte Werndl (Salzburg). Please note that, with the exception of Professor Werndl’s paper, the intention is that all participants have read the papers in advance: at the workshop, each speaker will introduce their paper in 15-20 minutes, followed by 40-45 minutes of discussion. If you would like to participate, please email Neil Dewar (

Location: Ludwigstraße 28, R026
Time: 12:00 - 18:30, 03/06/2017


12:00 - 13:00 Lydia Patton: How do Mathematical and Physical Models Work Together in Practice?
13:00 - 13:30 Lunch (fend for yourselves)
13:30 - 14:00 Coffee
14:00 - 15:00 Charlotte Werndl: The Neglect of Initial Conditions Dependence and Initial Conditions Uncertainty in Climate Science
15:00 - 15:15 Break
15:15 - 16:15 Erik Curiel: Getting the Theory into the Laboratory
16:15 - 16:30 Break
16:30 - 17:30 Patricia Palacios: Market Crashes as Critical Phenomena? Explanation, Idealization, and Universality in Econophysics
17:30 - 17:45 Break
17:45 - 18:00 Summary of themes and interconnections
18:00 - 18:30 Final discussion

This workshop is made possible by the DFG project The Evolution of Unpopular Norms and Bullying.

Philosophy of Physics

This reading group focuses on the foundations of modern physics and addresses conceptual, formal, and philosophical problems. In SS17, we will be reading Laura Ruetsche’s book Interpreting Quantum Theories (co-recipient of the 2013 Lakatos Prize). The reading group meets on Tuesdays at 18:00, in Ludwigstraße 31 R028. If you would like to attend, please contact Neil Dewar (

In WS17, we will be reading David Malament's book Topics in the Foundations of General Relativity and Newtonian Gravitation Theory (co-recipient of the 2014 Lakatos Prize). The reading group meets on Fridays at 16:30, in Ludwigstraße 31, R126. If you would like to attend, please contact Neil Dewar (