Why a Relativistic Quantum Mechanical World Must Be Indeterministic

Avi Levy, Meir Hemmo

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


We present the framework of Empirical Models and Hidden Variables Models in the foundations of Quantum Mechanics and its relation to Special Relativity. In this framework we discuss the definitions of properties such as non-signaling, strong and weak determinism, locality and, especially contextuality and show that (under mild assumptions) contextuality is equivalent to non-locality and to weak determinism, and non-contextuality is equivalent to locality and strong determinism. The central derivation of this paper is that a contextual Empirical Model cannot be accounted for by a Lorentz invariant (in the broad sense; see Sect. 19.1) and deterministic (strong or weak) theory. Hence, a relativistic theory which yields the empirical predictions of quantum mechanics must be genuinely stochastic (i.e., cannot be deterministic at its fundamental level). Finally, we discuss certain debates about the existence of relativistic versions of Bohm’s and the GRW interpretations of quantum mechanics.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationQuantum, Probability, Logic
Subtitle of host publicationThe Work and Influence of Itamar Pitowsky
EditorsMeir Hemmo, Orly Shenker
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages25
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-34316-3
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-34315-6
StatePublished - 8 Apr 2020


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