From locally covariant quantum fields to effective quantum gravity

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I will present recent result on constructing effective quantum gravity theory as a locally covariant QFT. The approach I advocate uses the BV formalism for dealing with the gauge freedom and Epstein-Glaser renormalization to control the UV divergences. I will show how gauge invariant observables that satisfy a weak notion of locality can be constructed in this framework and I will sketch the argument for perturbative background independence. Recently these ideas were applied to models relevant in cosmology.