Decoherence, Branching, and the Born Rule in a Mixed-State Everettian Multiverse

Abstract

In Everettian quantum mechanics, justifications for the Born rule appeal to self-locating uncertainty or decision theory. Such justifications have focused exclusively on a pure-state Everettian multiverse, represented by a wave function. Recent works in quantum foundations suggest that it is viable to consider a mixed-state Everettian multiverse, represented by a (mixed-state) density matrix. Here, we develop the conceptual foundations for decoherence and branching in a mixed-state multiverse, and extend the standard Everettian justifications for the Born rule to this setting. This extended framework provides a unification of 'classical' and 'quantum' probabilities, and additional theoretical benefits, for the Everettian picture.

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Author Profiles

Eugene Chua
California Institute of Technology
Eddy Keming Chen
University of California, San Diego

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