Philosophy of Social Science


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Many of you would have been aware of the increasing use of randomised evaluations in Social Science research and for public policy reasons. Taking an epistemological look, I give a robust argument on why the claims of randomised evaluations actually evade the problem of induction. Hope to get your thoughts. Thanks in advance !

1. Introduction

The usage of randomised evaluations in social inquiry has been recent and responses to them have been wide ranging. Some have described it as the “gold standard” in empirical research, (Duflo, Glennerster,&Kremer, 2006) while others though have been more critical of their value in making predictions. (Deaton, 2009)

Randomised evaluations[1] (REs) seek to make predictions on the impact of an intervention, when it is attempted in a new situation. REs work by first determining the impact of the intervention. Subsequently, for the new situation it is expected that the impact would be similar.

To determine an intervention’s impact, numerous subjects are ... (read more)

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Just wondering if the irony of an article about the high quality of open science research being situated behind a pay wall was lost on anybody...

It seems that matters of cultural typology (shame-guilt, individualism-collectivism, honor-dignity, etc.) might go in the "philosophy of Social Science" category but I don't see where it might fit. I am going to be putting out a few articles on the topic when a current project completes and would like to have them placed here. Perhaps some might feel this is less a matter of philosophy and more a matter of sociology per se. I would appreciate any thoughts on this, as well as any resources regarding the honor-dignity typology that is just now coming into vogue via cross-over between anthro-, socio-, and legal theory. Thanks much.

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