John Gerring's exceptional textbook has been thoroughly revised in this second edition. It offers a one-volume introduction to social sciencemethodology relevant to the disciplines of anthropology, economics, history, political science, psychology and sociology. This new edition has been extensively developed with the introduction of new material and a thorough treatment of essential elements such as conceptualization, measurement, causality and research design. It is written for students, long-time practitioners and methodologists and covers both qualitative and quantitative methods. (...) It synthesizes the vast and diverse field of methodology in a way that is clear, concise and comprehensive. While offering a handy overview of the subject, the book is also an argument about how we should conceptualize methodological problems. Thinking about methodology through this lens provides a new framework for understanding work in the social sciences. (shrink)
Case study research was once the primary methodology of research in political science. The shift to other methodologies in recent decades suggests has led to a devaluing of these approaches. This article explores six roles for case studies in the social sciences and argues that an understanding of the multiple aims of research supports a methodological pluralism that includes case study research.
Analogicity in computer science is understood in two, not mutually exclusive ways: 1) with regard to the continuity feature, 2) with regard to the analogousness feature. Continuous computations are the subject of three methodological questions considered in the paper: 1a) to what extent do their theoretical models go beyond the model of the universal Turing machine, 1b) is their computational power greater than that of the universal Turing machine, 1c) under what conditions are continuous computations realizable in practice? The (...) analogue-analogical computations lead to two other issues: 2a) in what sense and to what extent their accuracy depends on the adequacy of certain theories of empirical sciences, 2b) are there analogue-analogical computations in nature that are also continuous? The above issues are an important element of the philosophical discussion on the limitations of contemporary computer science. (shrink)
The term scientism is used in several ways. It is used to denote an epistemological thesis according to which science is the source of our knowledge about the world and ourselves. Relatedly, it is used to denote a methodological thesis according to which the methods of science are superior to the methods of non-scientific fields or areas of inquiry, or even used to put forward a metaphysical thesis that what exists is what science says exists. In recent (...) decades, the term scientism has acquired a derogatory meaning when it is used in defense of non-scientific ways of knowing. In particular, some philosophers level the charge of “scientism” against those (mostly scientists) who are dismissive of philosophy. Other philosophers, however, embrace scientism, or some variant thereof, and object to the pejorative use of the term scientism. This book critically examines the arguments for and against scientism of various kinds to answer the central question: does scientism pose an existential threat to philosophy, or should philosophy become more scientific? (shrink)
This book explores aspects of science from an economic point of view. The author begins with economic models of misconduct in science, moving on to discuss other important issues, including market failure and the market place of ideas.
The feminist goal of challenging inequality requires distinctive methods such as combining social action with research and using participatory approaches. These methods strengthen scientific standards of good evidence and open debate, but they conflict with elitism and careerism in academia and hence are rarely used. Nonhierarchical structures must be created.
This article provides a brief review of Saybrook Review, Vol 6, No. 1, Spring 1986. Special issue: Extensions in Human ScienceMethodology guest edited by Donald E. Polkinghorne. This issue contains articles written by four of the faculty of the Saybrook Institute, all of which examine "the consequences of extending the criteria of science beyond the traditional objectivism-relativism dichotomy." Polkinghorne's lead article is a compelling and clear historical characterization of the place of human science in today's (...) academic world. The second is an article by Anthony Stigliano that proposes "an ontology for the human sciences" where research would be grounded in a language of description that is "incomplete, discontinuous, dialogal, and interlaced with different 'levels' of discourse". Jurgen Kremer's article reviews prevailing views of reason and truth, and makes a proposal "for the development of narratives of truths...that consciously include moral and aesthetic dimensions." The final article is by Marcia Salner and is a piece that explores the question of validity in human science research, paying particular attention to "the central role of linguistic communication as a major data source, and to the role of communal negotiation and juridical rules for dealing with conflicting interpretations." Together these articles make a positive advance toward the understanding of the context as well as consequences of an epistemological position that stresses contextual relativism and embraces methodological pluralism. 2012 APA, all rights reserved). (shrink)
The validity of three premises, set as foundational pillars of modern sociological approach to science, is contested, namely: (i) the postulate, stating that science is devoid of whatever generis specifical; (ii) it is liable to the usual empirical study; (iii) the practicing scientist's self-reflexive judgements must be disbelieved and rejected. Contrariwise, the ignored so far quaint nature of knowledge, escaping even from the elementary empirical treating - discernment and observation - is revealed and demonstrated. This peculiar nature requires, (...) accordingly, a specific meta-cognitive dealing for positing it as 'empirical object', unfortunately missed still by the Strong Programme. The inadequate approach adopted led to a substitution of 'scientific' for common knowledge. The tacit thus far alternative, setting the foundations of meta-science, is suggested. (shrink)
The validity of three premises, set as foundational pillars of modern sociological approach to science, is contested, namely: the postulate, stating that science is devoid of whatever generis specifical; it is liable to the usual empirical study; the practicing scientist's self-reflexive judgements must be disbelieved and rejected. Contrariwise, the ignored so far quaint nature of knowledge, escaping even from the elementary empirical treating - discernment and observation - is revealed and demonstrated. This peculiar nature requires, accordingly, a specific (...) meta-cognitive dealing for positing it as 'empirical object', unfortunately missed still by the Strong Programme. The inadequate approach adopted led to a substitution of 'scientific' for common knowledge. The tacit thus far alternative, setting the foundations of meta-science, is suggested. (shrink)
Political science is divided between methodological individualists, who seek to explain political phenomena by reference to individuals and their interactions, and holists (or nonreductionists), who consider some higher-level social entities or properties such as states, institutions, or cultures ontologically or causally significant. We propose a reconciliation between these two perspectives, building on related work in philosophy. After laying out a taxonomy of different variants of each view, we observe that (i) although political phenomena result from underlying individual attitudes and (...) behavior, individual-level descriptions do not always capture all explanatorily salient properties, and (ii) nonreductionistic explanations are mandated when social regularities are robust to changes in their individual-level realization. We characterize the dividing line between phenomena requiring nonreductionistic explanation and phenomena permitting individualistic explanation and give examples from the study of ethnic conflicts, social-network theory, and international-relations theory. (shrink)
This article discusses the cultural understanding of the fantastic from Julio Cortazar’s work, expressed particularly in their metalinguistic texts, as a Latin American way of assuming "the real", which can project the fundamentals of Cortazar's work to the humanities and especially to ethnology. En este artículo se reflexiona sobre la comprensión transcultural y el tema de lo fantástico, ello desde el examen de la obra de Julio Cortázar, expresada particularmente en sus textos metalingüísticos, como un modo latinoamericano y de la (...) misma manera más ampliamente occidental de asumir “lo real”, lo que puede proyectar los fundamentos de la obra de Cortázar hacia las ciencias humanas y especialmente hacia la etnología. (shrink)
One of the initial obstacles to the study of the theory of value is the fact that practically every author whom the student consults on the subject characterizes value and valuation differently, and seems to trace them ultimately to a different source. For example, one writer will formulate a theory of value in terms of pain and pleasure ; another, in terms of feeling ; another, in terms of desires or wants ; still others, in terms of “requiredness”, of interest, (...) of striving ; and so on. (shrink)
This is a jewel among methods handbooks, bringing together a formidable collection of international contributors to comment on every aspect of the various central issues, complications, and controversies in the core methodological traditions. It is designed to meet the needs of those disciplinary and nondisciplinary problem-oriented social inquirers for a comprehensive overview of the methodological literature.
Since the 1950s, Donald T. Campbell has been one of the most influential contributors to the methodology of the social sciences. A distinguished psychologist, he has published scores of widely cited journal articles, and two awards, in social psychology and in public policy, have been named in his honor. This book is the first to collect his most significant papers, and it demonstrates the breadth and originality of his work.
This book consists of a collection of essays written between 1965 and 1981. Some have been published elsewhere; others appear here for the first time. Although dealing with different figures and different periods, they have a common theme: all are concerned with examining how the method of hy pothesis came to be the ruling orthodoxy in the philosophy of science and the quasi-official methodology of the scientific community. It might have been otherwise. Barely three centuries ago, hypothetico deduction (...) was in both disfavor and disarray. Numerous rival methods for scientific inquiry - including eliminative and enumerative induction, analogy and derivation from first principles - were widely touted. The method of hypothesis, known since antiquity, found few proponents between 1700 and 1850. During the last century, of course, that ordering has been inverted and - despite an almost universal acknowledgement of its weaknesses - the method of hypothesis has become the orthodoxy of the 20th century. Behind the waxing and waning of the method of hypothesis, embedded within the vicissitudes of its fortunes, there is a fascinating story to be told. It is a story that forms an integral part of modern science and its philosophy. (shrink)
Consciousness is scientifically challenging to study because of its subjective aspect. This leads researchers to rely on report-based experimental paradigms in order to discover neural correlates of consciousness (NCCs). I argue that the reliance on reports has biased the search for NCCs, thus creating what I call 'methodological artefacts'. This paper has three main goals: first, describe the measurement problem in consciousness science and argue that this problem led to the emergence of methodological artefacts. Second, provide a critical assessment (...) of the NCCs put forward by the global neuronal workspace theory. Third, provide the means of dissociating genuine NCCs from methodological artefacts. (shrink)
Experimental research is commonly held up as the paradigm of "good" science. Although experiment plays many roles in science, its classical role is testing hypotheses in controlled laboratory settings. Historical science is sometimes held to be inferior on the grounds that its hypothesis cannot be tested by controlled laboratory experiments. Using contemporary examples from diverse scientific disciplines, this paper explores differences in practice between historical and experimental research vis-à-vis the testing of hypotheses. It rejects the claim that (...) historical research is epistemically inferior. For as I argue, scientists engage in two very different patterns of evidential reasoning and, although there is overlap, one pattern predominates in historical research and the other pattern predominates in classical experimental research. I show that these different patterns of reasoning are grounded in an objective and remarkably pervasive time asymmetry of nature. (shrink)
The methodology of classical economics presents a fascinating glimpse of Enlightenment scientists wrestling with ancient epistemological problems that were considered overcome in the new age. The tension between hypotheses and empirical investigation abolished by transcending the old metaphysical and religious idols recurs as efforts are made to clarify the new practice of physical science and to extend this practice to the study of human action; debates arise over the source and use of “hypotheses” and the ancient Platonic-Aristotelian split (...) is given new life. Deborah Redman has written a magisterial review of this development. (shrink)
The thought about this book has been developed with the view of adding value to the teaching of Research Methodology for undergraduate and graduate students in developing economies like Sierra Leone. At the same time, it is a very useful tool for professionals engaged in research as part of their work life and for which their understanding of the dichotomy between Research Methods and Research Methodology needs to be addressed. It is divided into distinct sections, which makes it (...) very easy for the beginner researcher to understand the difference in concepts used, while at the same time enhancing their basic understanding of scientific tool(s) needed to pursue ontological research, with the aim of adding new value in the body of knowledge. The main motivation for producing the first edition is based on the following: ● To write a book that focused on using and applying the techniques of research methodology in a research setting. ● To write a book that is accessible to students and practicing researchers in developing country like Sierra Leone, where the subject matter is not so well taught, but critical in developing knowledge capacity for graduates entering the profession of research. ● To pursue critical research, particularly in the social science field pertaining to Econometrics, Sociology, Development Economics and many more. (shrink)
There are two chief tasks which confront the philosophy of scientific method. The first task is to specify the methodology which serves as the objective ground for scientific theory appraisal and acceptance. The second task is to explain how application of this methodology leads to advance toward the aim(s) of science. In other words, the goal of the theory of method is to provide an integrated explanation of both rational scientific theory choice and scientific progress.
Reflection without Rules offers a comprehensive, pointed exploration of the methodological tradition in economics and the breakdown of the received view within the philosophy of science. Professor Hands investigates economists' use of naturalistic and sociological paradigms to model economic phenomena and assesses the roles of pragmatism, discourse, and situatedness in discussions of economic practice before turning to a systematic exploration of more recent developments in economic methodology. The treatment emphasizes the changes taking place in science theory and (...) its relationship to the movement away from a rules-based view of economic methodology. The work will be of interest to all economists concerned with methodological issues as well as philosophers and others studying the relationships between economics and contemporary science theory. (shrink)
The aim of the paper is to deal with the links between Schutz and Wittgenstein on the centrality of language and intersubjectivity in the structure of meanings. I believe there are similarities between Schutz’s proto-trust in the natural attitude and Wittgenstein’s animal faith in the basic life form of language games. To this end, Cicourel’s analysis of the relationship between language, Verstehen and empirical research methods will be used. Cicourel renders Schutz and Wittgenstein contiguous, by interpreting the different techniques of (...) empirical research as languages that structure the understanding of meanings on the basis of the order of different realities and different language games. (shrink)
Imre Lakatos' philosophical and scientific papers are published here in two volumes. Volume I brings together his very influential but scattered papers on the philosophy of the physical sciences, and includes one important unpublished essay on the effect of Newton's scientific achievement. Volume II presents his work on the philosophy of mathematics (much of it unpublished), together with some critical essays on contemporary philosophers of science and some famous polemical writings on political and educational issues. Imre Lakatos had an (...) influence out of all proportion to the length of his philosophical career. This collection exhibits and confirms the originality, range and the essential unity of his work. It demonstrates too the force and spirit he brought to every issue with which he engaged, from his most abstract mathematical work to his passionate 'Letter to the director of the LSE'. Lakatos' ideas are now the focus of widespread and increasing interest, and these volumes should make possible for the first time their study as a whole and their proper assessment. (shrink)
In the growing Prussian university system of the early nineteenth century, "Wissenschaft" (science) was seen as an endeavor common to university faculties, characterized by a rigorous methodology. On this view, history and jurisprudence are sciences, as much as is physics. Nineteenth century trends challenged this view: the increasing influence of materialist and positivist philosophies, profound changes in the relationships between university faculties, and the defense of Kant's classification of the sciences by neo-Kantians. Wilhelm Dilthey's defense of the independence (...) of the methodology of the human sciences (Geisteswissenschaften) from those of the natural sciences (Naturwissenschaften) is as much a return to the ideal of Wissenschaft as a cooperative endeavor as it is a defense of the autonomy of interpretive or hermeneutic methods. The debate between Dilthey and the neo-Kantian Wilhelm Windelband at the close of the century illuminates the development of this dialogue over the nineteenth century. (shrink)