The Art of Empirical Investigation

The Art of Empirical Investigation

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Overview

The Art of Empirical Investigation by Julian Simon

Julian Simon was known for his methodical, and often controversial, writings challenging conventional beliefs about overpopulation, pollution, disappearing farmland, and the scarcity of energy sources and raw materials. But throughout his works is a common theme: that responsible, unbiased research and examination of the data is indispensable to formulating a well-informed and accurate opinion. The Art of Empirical Investigation teaches student, professor, researcher, and those interested in ascertaining the truth about social issues just how to proceed.

The Art of Empirical Investigation is a textbook on the basics of social-scientific research. It discusses all the important empirical methods used in social science, and its examples, drawn from a wide variety of academic and applied fields, illustrate the use of each method in its most appropriate context. The actual decisions a researcher must make at every stage of a project are emphasized, as well as obstacles to knowledge--such as observer bias, deception, unreliability of data, and sampling costs--and how to overcome them. Presupposing nothing, the book introduces the reader to the foundations of empirical social-science research, regardless of a specific field. It also makes an important contribution to beginning researchers' understanding of an operational definition of causality, which cuts through philosophical obscurity and teaches the researcher how to decide whether or not a given relationship is causal.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780765805300
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 09/30/2003
Pages: 584
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.31(d)

About the Author

Julian L. Simon (1932-1998) was professor of business administration at the University of Maryland and distinguished senior fellow of the Cato Institute. He is credited as being one of the founders of free-market environmentalism. His books include Hoodwinking the Nation, The Philosophy and Practice of Resampling Statistics, and The Ultimate Resource. James E. Katz is professor and chair of the Department of Communication at Rutgers University where he also directs the Center for Mobile Communication Studies. In 2009, he was the Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Twentieth Century Communications History (Italy). Prior to coming to Rutgers, Katz headed a social science research unit at Bell Communications Research. He has two patents in the telecommunications field and has held fellowships at Harvard and MIT. He is the author of Magic in the Air: Mobile Communication and the Transformation of Social Life and Connections: Social and Cultural Studies of the Telephone in American Life, published by Transaction.

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