Creation and creativity through the eyes of a (quantum) scientist, a talk by Adam Kirrander [25 February 2015]

Crag Seminar
25 February 2015: Lecture Theatre G.03 – 5.30
50 George Square
The University of Edinburgh

Creation and creativity through the eyes of a (quantum) scientist

Adam Kirrander
School of Chemistry, University of Edinburgh

Audio of the talk and Q&A here

I discuss the act of creation from the perspective of a practicing scientist, as well as the role of creativity, insight and intuition for the evolution of scientific ideas and concepts. Although quantum mechanics is my main day-to-day tool, I will touch rather lightly on the associated metaphysical mysteries, and focus more on issues that many scientists encounter on an everyday basis. This includes questions such as ‘Is there a role for creativity in science, or is it all pre-determined by physical laws, mathematics and computers?’, or ‘Can scientists fundamentally create something new, or are we just unearthing what is already there?’.

Feedback of the session:

Lecture Theatre
30 people were present
We gathered 9 feedback sheets.

Most of the attendees were students

10% were faculty professors

1. How did they learn about this session?

Most of them through a referral, some of them through Facebook or our newsletter

2. What is the main reason for attending this Crag session?

Content and personal interest: 50% of the students were from the science departments

3. What is the interesting idea, heard this evening, that you might remember tomorrow?

tension between creativity and procedures, the idea of common perception of reality vs objective science, influence of quantum mechanics on the brain, falsifiability, parallel universes, un-falsifiability of philosophic proposals, quantum cognition

4. Did this Crag session fulfil the reason for attending?

the interest was ‘high’ or ‘good’

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