Robbert Dijkgraaf is not alone - there are many silly attempts to deduce spacetime from premises different from the principle of relativity and the constancy of the speed of light:

"With the help of a grant of over $60,000 from FQXi he [Sean Carroll] hopes to explain the very emergence of space and time using quantum physics. [...] The question of whether one can recover spacetime itself from the ideas of quantum mechanics, thereby understanding how all our classical notions arise from quantum theory, is a fascinating one."

http://fqxi.org/community/articles/display/213
Sabine Hossenfelder: "...hints at a deeper truth: that space-time is made of small elements whose collective motion gives rise to the force we call gravity. In this case, gravity would not be a truly fundamental phenomenon, but an emergent one."

https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswithabang/2017/02/28/is-dark-matter-about-to-be-killed-by-emergent-gravity/
"The challenge is to somehow bring the notion of granularity to spacetime, bring the discrete to the continuous. This is the problem that has baffled theoretical physicists for at least half a century."

http://radio.wpsu.org/post/reality-not-what-we-can-see
Bringing granularity to spacetime is equivalent to painting the principle of relativity in yellow. Spacetime is, essentially, the Lorentz transformation equations - nothing more, nothing less. One cannot deduce these equations from premises different from the principle of relativity and the constancy of the speed of light. If the present spacetime is wrong and should be replaced, then an underlying premise, e.g. Einstein's constant-speed-of-light postulate, is false.

Pentcho Valev