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Author Taagepera, Rein.

Title Making social sciences more scientific : the need for predictive models / Rein Taagepera
Published Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, [2008]


Location Call no. Vol. Availability
 W'BOOL  300.72 Taa/Mss  AVAILABLE
Description xv, 254 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Contents Why social sciences are not scientific enough -- Can social science approaches find the law of gravitation? -- How to construct predictive models: simplicity and nonabsurdity -- Example of model building: electoral volatility -- Physicists multiply, social scientists add---even when it does not add up -- All hypotheses are not created equal -- Why most numbers published in social sciences are dead on arrival -- Forbidden areas and anchor points -- Geometric means and lognormal distributions -- Example of interlocking models : party sizes and cabinet duration -- Beyond constraint-based models : communication channels and growth rates -- Why we should shift to symmetric regression -- All indices are not created equal -- From descriptive to predictive approaches -- Recommendations for better regression -- Converting from descriptive analysis to predictive models -- Are electoral studies a rosetta stone for parts of social sciences? -- Beyond regression : the need for predictive models
Summary "In his challenging new book Rein Taagepera argues that society needs more from social sciences than they have delivered. One reason for falling short is that social sciences have depended excessively on regression and other statistical approaches, neglecting logical model building. Science is not only about the empirical 'What is?' but also very much about the conceptual 'How should it be on logical grounds?' Statistical approaches are essentially descriptive, while quantitatively formulated logical models are predictive in an explanatory way. Making Social Sciences More Scientific contrasts the predominance of statistics in today's social sciences and predominance of quantitatively predictive logical models in physics. It shows how to construct predictive models and gives social science examples
Making Social Sciences More Scientific is useful to students who wish to learn the basics of the scientific method and to all those researchers who look for ways to do better social science."--BOOK JACKET
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages [241]-247) and index
Subject Social sciences -- Research.
Social sciences -- Fieldwork.
Social sciences -- Methodology.
Sociology -- Methodology.
Sociology -- Research.
LC no. 2008015441
ISBN 9780199534661