Santa Fe Institute

Jim Hartle elected to the American Philosophical Society

June 29, 2016 11:16 a.m.

Jim Hartle has been elected as one of 33 new members of the American Philosophical Society, an honorary society of some 1,000 scholars from a variety of disciplines.

His election took place April 30 at the Society’s annual meeting in Philadelphia. 

Hartle is a research professor and Professor of Physics Emeritus at the University of California, Santa Barbara, as well as External Professor of the Santa Fe Institute. He received his Ph.D. from the California Institute of Technology in 1964.

His citation reads: "James Hartle is one of the deepest thinkers in the field of quantum gravity as well as that of the foundations of quantum mechanics. After important work in relativistic astrophysics, Hartle, and others, pioneered the modern approach to reconciling Einstein’s theory of general relativity with quantum mechanics. In a famous paper with Stephen Hawking, the thermal properties of black holes were calculated using path integrals, putting Hawking’s observation of the thermal properties of black holes on a sound footing. The equally famous 'Hartle-Hawking Wave Function' is one of the most interesting proposals for the initial state of the universe. In recent years Hartle and [Murray] Gell-Mann have made fundamental contributions to the foundations and interpretation of quantum mechanics."

Fellows are nominated by current members and elected annually in April.

See the list of new 2016 members here.

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