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Dutch Institute for Emergent Phenomena

Connecting the science of emergence across the Netherlands and beyond
The Dutch Institute for Emergent Phenomena (DIEP) is an interdisciplinary research centre across fundamental sciences with the purpose of furthering the understanding of emergent phenomena. It aims at understanding how the universe, space, time and the fundamental building blocks of matter emerged from the quantum world and how these building blocks aggregate forming the nano, molecular and polymeric structures that ultimately give rise to the macroscopic world we experience today. Emergent phenomena are extremely common in nature and their manifestation is based on the same underlying principles across sciences. Using analytic, numerical, experimental and philosophical methods available from quantum gravity, mathematics, physics, chemistry and philosophy of science, DIEP takes a transdisciplinary approach in tackling emergent behaviour. Integrated in the National Science Agenda (route 2), DIEP will gather research groups and scientists across the Netherlands and beyond and establish itself as a beacon for a new understanding of nature and emergence.


What is the science of emergence?

The universe is composed of microscopic building blocks and the world we see around us is the result of a combination of millions of billions of billions of those blocks. When we walk through the streets of our cities, we do not see these microscopic elements of the universe but instead cars and buses smoothly driving pass by us. If we would carry our microscopes and particle accelerators with us, we would be able to see some part of that microscopic world but we usually carry nothing more than a pair of Ray-Ban glasses. The world we see with our own eyes is governed by laws that originated from a microscopic world but the laws that govern that microscopic world are completely different. The world we experience is said to have emerged from a world that only microscopes can reach. All the smooth experiences of wind blowing, music, sound or touch are the result of these emergent laws.
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