Perimeter Institute is pleased to announce that Rob Spekkens has been appointed to a Junior Faculty position in Quantum Foundations. He officially takes up his position in November 2008. In making the announcement, Interim Scientific Director, Rob Myers, said "We are all very pleased that Rob will be joining Perimeter this fall. As well as being a leader in the field of Foundations, Rob has done first class work in Quantum Information. So having him on the faculty at PI will build up our Quantum Foundations group and at the same time, strengthen our efforts in Quantum Information."
Dr. Spekkens describes one of the themes of his current foundations research as "the idea that the quantum state is a state of incomplete knowledge rather than a state of reality," This idea has led him to re-evaluate both the potential and the limitations of hidden variable models of quantum theory - showing on the one hand how certain models yield particularly natural explanations of many quantum phenomena, and on the other hand how a novel assumption of "noncontextuality", though natural for such models, is ultimately untenable. He has also been active in investigating the role of reference frames and superselection rules in quantum theory.
Rob Spekkens received his PhD from the University of Toronto in 2001 and went on to hold his first postdoctoral position at the same institution. He then came to PI for a three-year postdoctoral position from 2003 - 2006. He has spent the past two years on a Royal Society funded Postdoctoral Fellowship at Cambridge University.