Weekly Overview of Social Science News

“The simplest explanation for ‘the curious absence of socially conservative economics’ the same reason that there aren’t many social conservatives in any academic field: Because social conservatism is considered uniquely socially disreputable in elite culture, in ways that libertarianism and economic conservatism are not.”

“Admittedly, NSF and NIH do both fund some HSS research, but the amounts involved are tiny compared with their STM expenditures – for example, just $250m or so of NSF’s $5.5bn research funds is spent on social, behavioral, and economic sciences. The only field receiving less funding is the US Arctic Research Commission!”

“‘The program suggested by our article would not fundamentally change the nature of social science,’ said David Laitin, a political science professor at Stanford University and a co-author of the article. ‘Rather, it would have small implications in the way we collect and report our data. It would also invite us to put more attention to the replication of well-known findings rather than investigations of new factors. But these small changes in our practices could have large effects in revising what we thought were well-established findings.'”

“[G Venkat Raman] expresses his disappointment in the overall decline in interest in social science amongst parents and schools. ‘We have not been able to generate a section of scholars to inspire youngsters to pursue social science for higher education. Schools too feel that having just one period a day for history and geography is more than enough. But what has surprised me is when students come up to me and admit that they did not know social science is such a beautiful subject,’ he says.

“’If you’re analyzing the phone book — or the 21st century version thereof — you shouldn’t have to consider it to be human subjects research,’ said Susan Fiske, a professor of psychology and public affairs at Princeton University, who led the committee.”

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