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Making Social Sciences More Scientific – The Need for Predictive Models - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Making Social Sciences More Scientific: The Need for Predictive Models

Rein Taagepera


Society needs more from social sciences than they have delivered. One reason for falling short is that social science methods 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. This book contrasts the predominance of statistics in today's social sciences with predominance of ... More

Keywords: logical model building, predictive models, predictive versus descriptive approaches, quantitatively predictive logical models, regression, scientific method, social science methods, statistical approaches, symmetric regression

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2008 Print ISBN-13: 9780199534661
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199534661.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Rein Taagepera, author
Research Professor, University of California, Irvine and University of Tartu
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