Emergent quantum mechanics (EmQM) explores the possibility of an ontology for quantum mechanics. The resurgence of interest in realist approaches to quantum mechanics challenges the standard textbook view, which represents an operationalist approach. The possibility of an ontological, i.e., realist, quantum mechanics was first introduced with the original de Broglie–Bohm theory, which has also been developed in another context as Bohmian mechanics. This Editorial introduces a Special Issue featuring contributions which were invited as part of the David Bohm Centennial symposium of the EmQM conference series (www.emqm17.org). Questions directing the EmQM research agenda are: Is reality intrinsically random or fundamentally interconnected? Is the universe local or nonlocal? Might a radically new conception of reality include a form of quantum causality or quantum ontology? What is the role of the experimenter agent in ontological quantum mechanics? The Special Issue also includes research examining ontological propositions that are not based on the Bohm-type nonlocality. These include, for example, local, yet time-symmetric, ontologies, such as quantum models based upon retrocausality. This Editorial provides topical overviews of thirty-one contributions which are organized into seven categories to provide orientation.
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