Philosophy of Social Science: A New Introduction

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9780199645107: Philosophy of Social Science: A New Introduction

This is a much-needed new introduction to a field that has been transformed in recent years by exciting new subjects, ideas, and methods. It is designed both for students with central interests in philosophy and those planning to concentrate on the social sciences, and it presupposes no particular background in either domain. From the wide range of topics at the forefront of debate in philosophy of social science, the editors have chosen those which are representative of the most important and interesting contemporary work. A team of distinguished experts explore key aspects of the field such as social ontology (what are the things that social science studies?), objectivity, formal methods, measurement, and causal inference. Also included are chapters focused on notable subjects of social science research, such as well-being and climate change. Philosophy of Social Science provides a clear, accessible, and up-to-date guide to this fascinating field.

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About the Author:


Nancy Cartwright is Professor of Philosophy at the Department of Philosophy, University of Durham and at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). Her research interests include philosophy and history of science (especially physics and economics), causal inference, objectivity, and evidence, especially on evidence-based policy.

Eleonora Montuschi is an Associate Professor at the Department of Philosophy and Cultural Heritage at the University of Venice, and Senior Research Fellow at the London School of Economics and Political Science. She is a philosopher of science working on scientific objectivity, the theory and practice of evidence, and methodological issues of the social sciences.

Review:


"...this collection also would be a valuable resource for classes in the general philosophy of science. Similarly, the essays are valuable for students in the social sciences, who likely will find them liberating in contrast to some conceptions of the natural sciences that are oversimplified but often still influential. The wide-ranging topics addressed in this volume include currently charged issues regarding climate science and demands for evidence-based public policy and equally charged but long-standing concerns about objectivity and the role of values in science. The essays on these topics, and other essays on matters such as case studies, measurement, and causal analysis, will broaden and deepen readers' understanding of science... Recommended. Lower-level undergraduates through graduate students; general readers." --Choice


"...the book showcases contributions by experts who provide an introduction to their area of competence with an accessible and fresh style. The result is sixteen chapters about debates of major concern to the philosophers of social science, which, while providing some background knowledge of the specific subject, often do so by giving it a novel or original twist. Overall, the style and structure of the book seem designed more to raise the curiosity of those new to the field than to systematically inform about the current state of affairs in the philosophy of the social sciences. In so doing, the book distances itself to some extent from other similar manuals, aspires to interest a broad and diverse audience, and qualifies as a good teaching resource." -- Metascience


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