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Department of History and Philosophy of Science


Varieties of Social Knowledge pulls together recent trends in social sciences to revisit classic epistemological questions such as whether knowledge of the social is fundamentally distinct from knowledge of the natural and whether there is a distinct method for investigating the social.

We are interested in the advent of machine learning and predictive analytics, metaphysics and modeling of cultural change, the growing importance of mixed methods (such as the use of case-study and interview evidence in causal inference), and the ways in which ethical and political values have a place in shaping social sciences.



Alexandrova, Anna (2018). 'Can the Science of Well-Being Be Objective?' The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 69 (2): 421–445.

Clarke, Christopher (2016). 'Preferences and Positivist Methodology in Economics.' Philosophy of Science 83 (2): 192–212.

Clarke, Christopher (2014). 'Neuroeconomics and Confirmation Theory.' Philosophy of Science 81 (2): 195–215.

Buskell, Andrew (2018). 'Causes of Cultural Disparity: Switches, Tuners, and the Cognitive Science of Religion.' Philosophical Psychology 31 (8): 1239–1264.

Buskell, Andrew (2017). 'Cultural Attractor Theory and Explanation.' Philosophy, Theory, and Practice in Biology 9 (13): 1–20. 

Wright, Jack (2018). 'Rescuing Objectivity: A Contextualist Proposal.' Philosophy of the Social Sciences.