Quantum Theory and the Limits of Objectivity

Richard Healey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Three recent arguments seek to show that the universal applicability of unitary quantum theory is inconsistent with the assumption that a well-conducted measurement always has a definite physical outcome. In this paper I restate and analyze these arguments. The import of the first two is diminished by their dependence on assumptions about the outcomes of counterfactual measurements. But the third argument establishes its intended conclusion. Even if every well-conducted quantum measurement we ever make will have a definite physical outcome, this argument should make us reconsider the objectivity of that outcome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1568-1589
Number of pages22
JournalFoundations of Physics
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018


  • Brukner
  • Frauchiger and Renner
  • Objectivity
  • Quantum theory
  • Wigner’s friend

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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