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Foundations of Quantum Cosmology

Martin Bojowald


This book lays the foundations of quantum cosmology, developing classical cosmology and quantum physics based on general principles without requiring detailed background knowledge in these fields. Throughout the book, the discussion focuses on the physical meaning of space–time – classical or quantum – and on the important requirement of general covariance. Various classical models are derived from this condition and applied to basic questions in cosmology and the physics of black holes. The book's introduction of relevant ingredients from quantum physics makes it possible to derive fundamental features of quantum cosmology, to present the main approaches to quantum gravity, including string theory and causal dynamical triangulations, and to outline some of their cosmological implications. It is an essential guide for researchers in quantum gravity and astrophysicists interested in fundamental aspects of cosmology.

 Key Features

  • Emphasizes the physics of quantum cosmology
  • Employs new semiclassical methods to avoid counter-intuitive aspects in quantum cosmology
  • Presents quantum cosmology in the language of well-understood physics models
  • Highlights implications of general covariance in classical and quantum cosmology
  • Includes results from a variety of approaches to quantum cosmology, as well as relations between them

About Editors

Martin Bojowald is a professor of physics at Penn State University. His research is focused on different aspects of quantum gravity. The nature of the field allows a broad range of projects, some of which focus more on mathematical aspects and others on physical applications.

Table of Contents


Hardback ISBN: 9780750324588

Ebook ISBN: 9780750324601

DOI: 10.1088/2514-3433/ab9c98

Publisher: Institute of Physics Publishing

Series: AAS-IOP Astronomy


So overall my feeling is that this is not a book I could recommend to students seeking further expansion of their understanding of the foundations of cosmology. It could probably be read with profit by someone with a good prior understanding of the subject, but not as a route into the subject. Apart from the lack of an index, it also has the pedagogical deficiency that there are no exercises (not even unsolved ones). From all these points of view, a much better alternative seems to be the 2017 Classical and Quantum Cosmology, by Calcagni (Springer). This is at a lower technical level, and probably seeks to serve a different readership. But for a cosmologist who, like me, does not work full-time on quantum issues, it makes a more approachable choice.

John Peacock. October 2021 The Observatory Magazine

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