, Volume 29, Issue 6, pp 607–619 | Cite as

Is Einstein’s Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics Ψ-Epistemic?

  • Vincenzo Fano
  • Giovanni MacchiaEmail author
  • Gino Tarozzi
Original Paper


Harrigan and Spekkens (Found Phys 40:125–157, 2010), introduced the influential notion of an ontological model of operational quantum theory. Ontological models can be either “epistemic” or “ontic.” According to the two scholars, Einstein would have been one of the first to propose an epistemic interpretation of quantum mechanics. Pusey et al. (Nat Phys 8:475–478, 2012) showed that an epistemic interpretation of quantum theory is impossible, so implying that Einstein had been refuted. We discuss in detail Einstein’s arguments against the standard interpretation of QM, proving that there is a misunderstanding in Harrigan and Spekkens’ attribution of an epistemic perspective to Einstein, whose point of view was actually statistical, but in a quasi-classical sense.


Einstein Harrigan and Spekkens Incompleteness Pusey, Barrett and Rudolph Quantum state 



We thank Claudio Calosi, who discussed with us the topic of the paper.


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pure and Applied SciencesUniversity of UrbinoUrbinoItaly

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