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The Activity of Young Children During Sleep
An Objective Study
Chester Garvey
University of Minnesota Press, 1939
The Activity of Young Children During Sleep was first published in 1939.This study analyzes the general character of the sleep of young children and the relationship of the quietness of their sleep to such factors as length of sleep, time of going to bed, afternoon naps, room and outdoor temperature, season, age and sex of the child, violent exercise between supper and bedtime, sleeping posture, etc.The subjects of the experiment were 22 children aged from 25 to 58 months, who slept in their own homes on especially designed beds having attached to the spring a Johnson kinetograph, which recorded the child’s motions during the night. The parents kept records of supplementary information. Usable records were obtained for a total of 3,339 nights.The techniques and results of this study will be of interest not only to students of child development but to all who are interested in the phenomena associated with sleep.
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Alien Landscapes?
Interpreting Disordered Minds
Jonathan Glover
Harvard University Press, 2014

We have made huge progress in understanding the biology of mental illnesses, but comparatively little in interpreting them at the psychological level. The eminent philosopher Jonathan Glover believes that there is real hope of progress in the human interpretation of disordered minds.

The challenge is that the inner worlds of people with psychiatric disorders can seem strange, like alien landscapes, and this strangeness can deter attempts at understanding. Do people with disorders share enough psychology with other people to make interpretation possible? To explore this question, Glover tackles the hard cases—the inner worlds of hospitalized violent criminals, of people with delusions, and of those diagnosed with autism or schizophrenia. Their first-person accounts offer glimpses of inner worlds behind apparently bizarre psychiatric conditions and allow us to begin to learn the “language” used to express psychiatric disturbance. Art by psychiatric patients, or by such complex figures as van Gogh and William Blake, give insight when interpreted from Glover’s unique perspective. He also draws on dark chapters in psychiatry’s past to show the importance of not medicalizing behavior that merely transgresses social norms. And finally, Glover suggests values, especially those linked with agency and identity, to guide how the boundaries of psychiatry should be drawn.

Seamlessly blending philosophy, science, literature, and art, Alien Landscapes? is both a sustained defense of humanistic psychological interpretation and a compelling example of the rich and generous approach to mental life for which it argues.

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Anatomy of a Train Wreck
The Rise and Fall of Priming Research
Ruth Leys
University of Chicago Press, 2024
A history of “priming” research that analyzes the field’s underlying assumptions and experimental protocols to shed new light on a contemporary crisis in social psychology.
 
In 2012, a team of Belgian scientists reported that they had been unable to replicate a canonical experiment in the field of psychology known as “priming.” The original experiment, performed by John Bargh in the nineties, had purported to show that words connoting old age unconsciously influenced—or primed—research subjects, causing them to walk more slowly. When subsequent researchers could not replicate these results, Nobel-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman warned of a “train wreck looming” if Bargh and his colleagues could not address doubts about their work. Since then, the inability to replicate other well-known priming experiments has helped precipitate an ongoing debate over what has gone wrong in psychology, raising fundamental questions about the soundness of research practices in the field.
 
Anatomy of a Train Wreck offers the first detailed history of priming research from its origins in the early 1980s to its recent collapse. Ruth Leys places priming experiments in the context of contemporaneous debates over not only the nature of automaticity but also the very foundations of social psychology. While these latest discussions about priming have largely focused on methodology—including sloppy experimental practices, inadequate statistical methods, and publication bias—Leys offers a genealogy of the theoretical expectations and scientific paradigms that have guided and motivated priming research itself. Examining scientists’ intellectual strategies, their responses to criticism, and their assumptions about the nature of subjectivity, Anatomy of a Train Wreck raises crucial questions about the evidence surrounding unconscious influence and probes the larger stakes of the replication crisis: psychology’s status as a science.   
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Arthropod Brains
Evolution, Functional Elegance, and Historical Significance
Nicholas James Strausfeld
Harvard University Press, 2012

In The Descent of Man, Charles Darwin proposed that an ant’s brain, no larger than a pin’s head, must be sophisticated to accomplish all that it does. Yet today many people still find it surprising that insects and other arthropods show behaviors that are much more complex than innate reflexes. They are products of versatile brains which, in a sense, think.

Fascinating in their own right, arthropods provide fundamental insights into how brains process and organize sensory information to produce learning, strategizing, cooperation, and sociality. Nicholas Strausfeld elucidates the evolution of this knowledge, beginning with nineteenth-century debates about how similar arthropod brains were to vertebrate brains. This exchange, he shows, had a profound and far-reaching impact on attitudes toward evolution and animal origins. Many renowned scientists, including Sigmund Freud, cut their professional teeth studying arthropod nervous systems. The greatest neuroanatomist of them all, Santiago Ramón y Cajal—founder of the neuron doctrine—was awed by similarities between insect and mammalian brains.

Writing in a style that will appeal to a broad readership, Strausfeld weaves anatomical observations with evidence from molecular biology, neuroethology, cladistics, and the fossil record to explore the neurobiology of the largest phylum on earth—and one that is crucial to the well-being of our planet. Highly informative and richly illustrated, Arthropod Brains offers an original synthesis drawing on many fields, and a comprehensive reference that will serve biologists for years to come.

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The Authoritarian Specter
Bob Altemeyer
Harvard University Press, 1996

The bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City, the emergence of militias and skinheads, the rise of the religious right, the attacks on Planned Parenthood clinics, the backlash against equal rights movements, the increase in poverty...these, according to Bob Altemeyer, are all versions of one story--the authoritarian personality in action. But aren't authoritarians Nazi types, kooks, the Klan? These are just the extreme examples, he argues. The Authoritarian Specter shows that many ordinary people today are psychologically disposed to embrace antidemocratic, fascist policies.

The book presents the latest results from a prize-winning research program on the authoritarian personality--a victory for the scientific method in the struggle to understand the worst aspects of ourselves. It connects for the first time the many ways authoritarianism undermines democracy. Many of our biggest problems, seemingly unrelated, have authoritarian roots. The scientific studies demonstrating this are extensive and thorough; their powerful findings are presented in a conversational, clear manner that engages readers from all backgrounds.

This is an important, timely work. It explains a growing movement to submit to a "man on horseback," to attack those who are different, to march in lockstep. Altemeyer reveals that these sentiments are strongly held even by many American lawmakers. These discoveries deserve careful attention in a presidential election year.

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Being Interdisciplinary
Adventures in Urban Science and Beyond
Alan Wilson
University College London, 2022
An accessible and enjoyable guide to interdisciplinary research from a leading academic in urban science.

In Being Interdisciplinary, Alan Wilson draws on five decades as a leading figure in urban science to set out a systems approach to interdisciplinarity for those conducting research in this and other fields. He argues that most research is interdisciplinary at its base and that a systems perspective is particularly appropriate for collaboration because it fosters an outlook that sees beyond disciplines. A systems approach enables researchers to identify the game-changers of the past as a basis for thinking outside of convention, for learning how to do something new and how to be ambitious.
 
Building on this systems focus, the book first establishes the basics of interdisciplinarity. Then, by drawing on the author’s wide experience in interdisciplinary research—as a researcher in urban science, a university professor and vice-chancellor, a civil servant, and an institute director, it illustrates general principles and a framework from which researchers can build their own interdisciplinary approach. In the last section, the book tackles questions of managing and organizing research from individual to institutional scales.
 
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Beyond Words
Story of Sensitivity Training and the Encounter Movement
Kurt W. Back
Russell Sage Foundation, 1972
Sensitivity training, T-Groups, and encounter groups have become a way of life. Beyond Words traces the history of this movement, the background of its successes, its varieties, and its failures. Dr. Back's approach is neither one of wide-eyed admiration nor hostility. Instead, he has written a book that provides the first long, hard look at sensitivity training as a social phenomenon. From its fortuitous beginnings the movement is followed through its developments at Bethel, its growth across the country, its new centers in California, its spread to Europe. The novelty of this movement, an almost religious exercise based on the scientific ethos, is related to the peculiar conditions of the last quarter century. The movement has acquired its own mythos. Dr. Back examines the interplay of the conflicting aims of self-expression and change, and shows how these contradictory aims have affected the ramifications of the movement in theory, in management, in recreation, and in education. Results emerging from studies on effects of sensitivity training indicate a recurrent pattern of great immediate emphasis followed by little permanent beneficial effect. Finally, Beyond Words assesses the overall impact of the movement, its relation to science, its possible changes, and its portent as a symptom of the state of society. Dr. Back examines the interplay of the conflicting aims of self-expression and change, and shows how these contradictory aims have affected the ramifications of the movement in theory, in management, in recreation, and in education.
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Born Together—Reared Apart
The Landmark Minnesota Twin Study
Nancy L. Segal
Harvard University Press, 2012

The identical “Jim twins” were raised in separate families and met for the first time at age thirty-nine, only to discover that they both suffered tension headaches, bit their fingernails, smoked Salems, enjoyed woodworking, and vacationed on the same Florida beach. This example of the potential power of genetics captured widespread media attention in 1979 and inspired the Minnesota Study of Twins Reared Apart. This landmark investigation into the nature-nurture debate shook the scientific community by demonstrating, across a number of traits, that twins reared separately are as alike as those raised together.

As a postdoctoral fellow and then as assistant director of the Minnesota Study, Nancy L. Segal provides an eagerly anticipated overview of its scientific contributions and their effect on public consciousness. The study’s evidence of genetic influence on individual differences in traits such as personality (50%) and intelligence (70%) overturned conventional ideas about parenting and teaching. Treating children differently and nurturing their inherent talents suddenly seemed to be a fairer approach than treating them all the same. Findings of genetic influence on physiological characteristics such as cardiac and immunologic function have led to more targeted approaches to disease prevention and treatment. And indications of a stronger genetic influence on male than female homosexuality have furthered debate regarding sexual orientation.

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Brain Storm
The Flaws in the Science of Sex Differences
Rebecca M. Jordan-Young
Harvard University Press, 2011

Female and male brains are different, thanks to hormones coursing through the brain before birth. That’s taught as fact in psychology textbooks, academic journals, and bestselling books. And these hardwired differences explain everything from sexual orientation to gender identity, to why there aren’t more women physicists or more stay-at-home dads.

In this compelling book, Rebecca Jordan-Young takes on the evidence that sex differences are hardwired into the brain. Analyzing virtually all published research that supports the claims of “human brain organization theory,” Jordan-Young reveals how often these studies fail the standards of science. Even if careful researchers point out the limits of their own studies, other researchers and journalists can easily ignore them because brain organization theory just sounds so right. But if a series of methodological weaknesses, questionable assumptions, inconsistent definitions, and enormous gaps between ambiguous findings and grand conclusions have accumulated through the years, then science isn’t scientific at all.

Elegantly written, this book argues passionately that the analysis of gender differences deserves far more rigorous, biologically sophisticated science. “The evidence for hormonal sex differentiation of the human brain better resembles a hodge-podge pile than a solid structure…Once we have cleared the rubble, we can begin to build newer, more scientific stories about human development.”

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Citizen Science in the Digital Age
Rhetoric, Science, and Public Engagement
James Wynn
University of Alabama Press, 2016
A discussion of the benefits and pitfalls of citizen science—scientific undertakings that make use of public participation and crowd-sourced data collection

James Wynn’s timely investigation highlights scientific studies grounded in publicly gathered data and probes the rhetoric these studies employ. Many of these endeavors, such as the widely used SETI@home project, simply draw on the processing power of participants’ home computers; others, like the protein-folding game FoldIt, ask users to take a more active role in solving scientific problems. In Citizen Science in the Digital Age: Rhetoric, Science, and Public Engagement, Wynn analyzes the discourse that enables these scientific ventures, as well as the difficulties that arise in communication between scientists and lay people and the potential for misuse of publicly gathered data.
 
Wynn puzzles out the intricacies of these exciting new research developments by focusing on various case studies. He explores the Safecast project, which originated from crowd-sourced mapping for Fukushima radiation dispersal, arguing that evolving technologies enable public volunteers to make concrete, sound, science-based arguments. Additionally, he considers the potential use of citizen science as a method of increasing the public’s identification with the scientific community, and contemplates how more collaborative rhetoric might deepen these opportunities for interaction and alignment. Furthermore, he examines ways in which the lived experience of volunteers may be integrated with expert scientific knowledge, and also how this same personal involvement can be used to further policy agendas.

Precious few texts explore the intersection of rhetoric, science, and the Internet. Citizen Science in the Digital Age fills this gap, offering a clear, intelligent overview of the topic intended for rhetoric and communication scholars as well as practitioners and administrators in a number of science-based disciplines. With the expanded availability of once inaccessible technologies and computing power to laypeople, the practice of citizen science will only continue to grow. This study offers insight into how—given prudent application and the clear articulation of common goals—citizen science might strengthen the relationships between scientists and laypeople.
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Communication Research into the Digital Society
Fundamental Insights from the Amsterdam School of Communication Research
Theo Araujo
Amsterdam University Press, 2024
Media and communication have become ubiquitous in today’s societies and affect all aspects of life. On an individual level, they impact how we learn about the world, how we entertain ourselves, and how we interact with others. On an organisational level, the interactions between media and organisations, such as political parties, NGOs, businesses and brands, shape organisations’ reputation, legitimacy, trust and (financial) performance, as well as individuals’ consumer, political, social and health behaviours. At the societal level, media and communication are crucial for shaping public opinion on current issues such as climate change, sustainability, diversity, and well-being. Media challenges are widespread and include mis- and disinformation, the negative impact of algorithms on our information diets, challenges to our privacy, cyberbullying, media addiction, and unwanted persuasion, among many others. All this makes the study of media and communication crucial.

This book provides a broad overview of the ways in which people create, use, and experience their media environment, and the role of media and communication for individuals, organisations, and society. The chapters in the book were written by researchers from the Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR) on the occasion of its 25th anniversary. ASCoR is today the largest research institute of its kind in Europe and has developed over the past 25 years into one of the best communications research institutes in the world.
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The Conflict of the Faculties
Perspectives on Artistic Research and Academia
Henk Borgdorff
Amsterdam University Press, 2012
Artistic research is an endeavour in which the artistic and the academic are connected. In this emerging field of research artistic practices contribute as research to what we know and understand, and academia opens its mind to forms of knowledge and understanding that are entwined with artistic practices. Henk Borgdorff also addresses how we comment on such issues, and how the things we say cause the practices involved to manifest themselves in specific ways, while also setting them into motion. In this sense, this work not only explores the phenomenon of artistic research in relation to academia, but it also engages with that relationship.
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The Craft of Research
Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb, and Joseph M. Williams
University of Chicago Press, 1995
This manual offers practical advice on the fundamentals of research to college and university students in all fields of study. The Craft of Research teaches much more than the mechanics of fact gathering: it explains how to approach a research project as an analytical process. The authors chart every stage of research, from finding a topic and generating research questions about it to marshalling evidence, constructing arguments, and writing everything up in a final report that is a model of authority. Their advice is designed for use by both beginners and seasoned practitioners, and for projects from class papers to dissertations.

This book is organized into four parts. Part One is a spirited introduction to the distinctive nature, values, and protocols of research. Part Two demystifies the art of discovering a topic. It outlines a wide range of sources, among them personal interests and passions. Parts Three and Four cover the essentials of argument—how to make a claim and support it—and ways to outline, draft, revise, rewrite, and polish the final report. Part Three is a short course in the logic, structure, uses, and common pitfalls of argumentation. The writing chapters in Part Four show how to present verbal and visual information effectively and how to shape sentences and paragraphs that communicate with power and precision.

"A well-constructed, articulate reminder of how important fundamental questions of style and approach, such as clarity and precision, are to all research."—Times Literary Supplement
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The Craft of Research, 2nd edition
Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb, and Joseph M. Williams
University of Chicago Press, 2003
Since 1995, more than 150,000 students and researchers have turned to The Craft of Research for clear and helpful guidance on how to conduct research and report it effectively . Now, master teachers Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb, and Joseph M. Williams present a completely revised and updated version of their classic handbook.

Like its predecessor, this new edition reflects the way researchers actually work: in a complex circuit of thinking, writing, revising, and rethinking. It shows how each part of this process influences the others and how a successful research report is an orchestrated conversation between a researcher and a reader. Along with many other topics, The Craft of Research explains how to build an argument that motivates readers to accept a claim; how to anticipate the reservations of thoughtful yet critical readers and to respond to them appropriately; and how to create introductions and conclusions that answer that most demanding question, "So what?"

Celebrated by reviewers for its logic and clarity, this popular book retains its five-part structure. Part 1 provides an orientation to the research process and begins the discussion of what motivates researchers and their readers. Part 2 focuses on finding a topic, planning the project, and locating appropriate sources. This section is brought up to date with new information on the role of the Internet in research, including how to find and evaluate sources, avoid their misuse, and test their reliability.

Part 3 explains the art of making an argument and supporting it. The authors have extensively revised this section to present the structure of an argument in clearer and more accessible terms than in the first edition. New distinctions are made among reasons, evidence, and reports of evidence. The concepts of qualifications and rebuttals are recast as acknowledgment and response. Part 4 covers drafting and revising, and offers new information on the visual representation of data. Part 5 concludes the book with an updated discussion of the ethics of research, as well as an expanded bibliography that includes many electronic sources.

The new edition retains the accessibility, insights, and directness that have made The Craft of Research an indispensable guide for anyone doing research, from students in high school through advanced graduate study to businesspeople and government employees. The authors demonstrate convincingly that researching and reporting skills can be learned and used by all who undertake research projects.

New to this edition:

Extensive coverage of how to do research on the internet, including how to evaluate and test the reliability of sources

New information on the visual representation of data

Expanded bibliography with many electronic sources

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CT Suite
The Work of Diagnosis in the Age of Noninvasive Cutting
Barry F. Saunders
Duke University Press, 2008
In CT Suite the doctor and anthropologist Barry F. Saunders provides an ethnographic account of how a particular diagnostic technology, the computed tomographic (CT) scanner, shapes social relations and intellectual activities in and beyond the CT suite, the unit within the diagnostic radiology department of a large teaching hospital where CT images are made and interpreted. Focusing on how expertise is performed and how CT images are made into diagnostic evidence, he concentrates not on the function of CT images for patients but on the function of the images for medical professionals going about their routines. Yet Saunders offers more than insider ethnography. He links diagnostic work to practices and conventions from outside medicine and from earlier historical moments. In dialogue with science and technology studies, he makes a significant contribution to scholarship on the visual cultures of medicine.

Saunders’s analyses are informed by strands of cultural history and theory including art historical critiques of realist representation, Walter Benjamin’s concerns about violence in “mechanical reproduction,” and tropes of detective fiction such as intrigue, the case, and the culprit. Saunders analyzes the diagnostic “gaze” of medical personnel reading images at the viewbox, the two-dimensional images or slices of the human body rendered by the scanner, methods of archiving images, and the use of scans as pedagogical tools in clinical conferences. Bringing cloistered diagnostic practices into public view, he reveals the customs and the social and professional hierarchies that are formulated and negotiated around the weighty presence of the CT scanner. At the same time, by returning throughout to the nineteenth-century ideas of detection and scientific authority that inform contemporary medical diagnosis, Saunders highlights the specters of the past in what appears to be a preeminently modern machine.

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Cycles of Invention and Discovery
Rethinking the Endless Frontier
Venkatesh Narayanamurti and Toluwalogo Odumosu
Harvard University Press, 2016

Cycles of Invention and Discovery offers an in-depth look at the real-world practice of science and engineering. It shows how the standard categories of “basic” and “applied” have become a hindrance to the organization of the U.S. science and technology enterprise. Tracing the history of these problematic categories, Venkatesh Narayanamurti and Toluwalogo Odumosu document how historical views of policy makers and scientists have led to the construction of science as a pure ideal on the one hand and of engineering as a practical (and inherently less prestigious) activity on the other. Even today, this erroneous but still widespread distinction forces these two endeavors into separate silos, misdirects billions of dollars, and thwarts progress in science and engineering research.

The authors contrast this outmoded perspective with the lived experiences of researchers at major research laboratories. Using such Nobel Prize–winning examples as magnetic resonance imaging, the transistor, and the laser, they explore the daily micro-practices of research, showing how distinctions between the search for knowledge and creative problem solving break down when one pays attention to the ways in which pathbreaking research actually happens. By studying key contemporary research institutions, the authors highlight the importance of integrated research practices, contrasting these with models of research in the classic but still-influential report Science the Endless Frontier. Narayanamurti and Odumosu’s new model of the research ecosystem underscores that discovery and invention are often two sides of the same coin that moves innovation forward.

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Diary of a Citizen Scientist
Chasing Tiger Beetles and Other New Ways of Engaging the World
Sharman Apt-Russell
Oregon State University Press, 2014
Winner of the 2015John Burroughs Medal, the 2015 WILLA Award for Best Creative Nonfiction, and finalist for the 2015 New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards

In the exploding world of citizen science, hundreds of thousands of volunteers are monitoring climate change, tracking bird migrations, finding stardust for NASA, and excavating mastodons. The sheer number of citizen scientists, combined with new technology, has begun to shape how research gets done. Non-professionals become acknowledged experts: dentists turn into astronomers and accountants into botanists.
 
Diary of a Citizen Scientist is a timely exploration of the phenomenon of citizen science, told through the lens of nature writer Sharman Apt Russell’s yearlong study of a little-known species, the Western red-bellied tiger beetle. In a voice both humorous and lyrical, Russell recounts her persistent and joyful tracking of an insect she calls “charismatic,” “elegant,” and “fierce.” Patrolling the Gila River in southwestern New Mexico, collector’s net in hand, she negotiates the realities of climate change even as she celebrates the beauty of a still-wild and rural landscape.
 
Russell’s self-awareness—of her occasionally-misplaced confidence, her quest to fill in “that blank spot on the map of tiger beetles,” and her desire to become newly engaged in her life—creates a portrait not only of the tiger beetle she tracks, but of the mindset behind self-driven scientific inquiry. Falling in love with the diversity of citizen science, she participates in crowdsourcing programs that range from cataloguing galaxies to monitoring the phenology of native plants, applauds the growing role of citizen science in environmental activism, and marvels at the profusion of projects around the world.
 
Diary of a Citizen Scientist offers its readers a glimpse into the transformative properties of citizen science—and documents the transformation of the field as a whole.
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Embargoed Science
Vincent Kiernan
University of Illinois Press, 2006

The popular notion of a lone scientist privately toiling long hours in a laboratory, striking upon a great discovery, and announcing it to the world is a romanticized fiction. Vincent Kiernan's Embargoed Science reveals the true process behind science news: an elite few scholarly journals control press coverage through a mechanism known as an embargo. The journals distribute advance copies of their articles to hundreds and sometimes thousands of journalists around the world, on the condition that journalists agree not to report their stories until a common time, several days later. When the embargo lifts, airwaves and newspaper pages are flooded with stories based on the journal's latest issue.

In addition to divulging the realities behind this collusive practice, Kiernan offers an unprecedented exploration of the embargo's impact on public and academic knowledge of science and medical issues. He surveys twenty five daily U.S. newspapers and relates his in-depth interviews with reporters to examine the inner workings of the embargo and how it structures our understanding of news about science. Kiernan ultimately argues that this system fosters "pack journalism" and creates an unhealthy shield against journalistic competition. The result is the uncritical reporting of science and medical news according to the dictates of a few key sources.

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Ethics in Mental Health and Deafness
Virginia Gutman
Gallaudet University Press, 2002

This volume explores ethical issues specific to working with deaf clients, particularly matters of confidentiality, managing multiple relationships, and the clinician’s competency to provide services, particularly in communicating with and understanding deaf people. Led by editor Virginia Gutman, a unique assembly of respected mental health professionals share their experiences and knowledge in working with deaf clients.

       Irene Leigh commences Ethics in Mental Health and Deafness with her varied experiences as a deaf mental health practitioner, and Gutman follows with insights on ethics in the “small world” of the Deaf community. William McCrone discusses the law and ethics, and Patrick Brice considers ethical issues regarding deaf children, adolescents, and their families. In contrast, Janet Pray addresses concerns about deaf and hard of hearing older clients.

       Minority deaf populations pose additional ethical aspects, which are detailed by Carolyn Corbett. Kathleen Peoples explores the challenges of training professionals in mental health services specifically for deaf clients. Closely related to these topics is the influence of interpreters with deaf clients in mental health settings, which Lynnette Taylor thoroughly treats. Ethics and Mental Health in Deafness also features a chapter on genetic counseling and testing for deafness by Kathleen Arnos. The final section, written by Robert Pollard, examines ethical conduct in research with deaf people, a fitting conclusion to a volume that will become required reading for all professionals and students in this discipline.

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The Ethnographer's Way
A Handbook for Multidimensional Research Design
Kristin Peterson and Valerie Olson
Duke University Press, 2024
The Ethnographer’s Way guides researchers through the exciting process of turning an initial idea into an in-depth research project. Kristin Peterson and Valerie Olson introduce “multidimensioning,” a method for planning projects that invites scholars to examine their research interests from all angles. Researchers learn to integrate seemingly disparate groups, processes, sites, and things into a unified conceptual framework. The handbook’s ten modules walk readers step-by-step, from the initial lightbulb moment to constructing research descriptions, planning data gathering, writing grant and dissertation proposals, and preparing for fieldwork. Designed for ethnographers and those working across disciplines, these modules provide examples of multidimensional research projects with exercises readers can utilize to formulate their own projects. The authors incorporate group work into each module to break the isolation common in academic project design. In so doing, Peterson and Olson’s handbook provides essential support and guidance for researchers working at all levels and stages of a project.
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Evolution and the Capacity for Commitment
Randolph Nesse
Russell Sage Foundation, 2001
Commitment is at the core of social life. The social fabric is woven from promises and threats that are not always immediately advantageous to the parties involved. Many commitments, such as signing a contract, are fairly straightforward deals, in which both parties agree to give up certain options. Other commitments, such as the promise of life-long love or a threat of murder, are based on more intangible factors such as human emotions. In Evolution and the Capacity for Commitment, distinguished researchers from the fields of economics, psychology, ethology, anthropology, philosophy, medicine, and law offer a rich variety of perspectives on the nature of commitment and question whether the capacity for making, assessing, and keeping commitments has been shaped by natural selection. Game theorists have shown that players who use commitment strategies—by learning to convey subjective offers and to gauge commitments others are willing to make—achieve greater success than those who rationally calculate every move for immediate reward. Evolution and the Capacity for Commitment includes contributions from some of the pioneering students of commitment. Their elegant analyses highlight the critical role of reputation-building, and show the importance of investigating how people can believe that others would carry out promises or threats that go against their own self-interest. Other contributors provide real-world examples of commitment across cultures and suggest the evolutionary origins of the capacity for commitment. Perhaps nowhere is the importance of commitment and reputation more evident than in the institutions of law, medicine, and religion. Essays by professionals in each field explore why many practitioners remain largely ethical in spite of manifest opportunities for client exploitation. Finally, Evolution and the Capacity for Commitment turns to leading animal behavior experts to explore whether non-humans also use commitment strategies, most notably through the transmission of threats or signs of non-aggression. Such examples illustrate how such tendencies in humans may have evolved. Viewed as an adaptive evolutionary strategy, commitment offers enormous potential for explaining complex and irrational emotional behaviors within a biological framework. Evolution and the Capacity for Commitment presents compelling evidence for this view, and offers a potential bridge across the current rift between biology and the social sciences. A Volume in the Russell Sage Foundation Series on Trust
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The Experimental Side of Modeling
Isabelle F. Peschard
University of Minnesota Press, 2018

An innovative, multifaceted approach to scientific experiments as designed by and shaped through interaction with the modeling process


The role of scientific modeling in mediation between theories and phenomena is a critical topic within the philosophy of science, touching on issues from climate modeling to synthetic models in biology, high energy particle physics, and cognitive sciences. Offering a radically new conception of the role of data in the scientific modeling process as well as a new awareness of the problematic aspects of data, this cutting-edge volume offers a multifaceted view on experiments as designed and shaped in interaction with the modeling process.

Contributors address such issues as the construction of models in conjunction with scientific experimentation; the status of measurement and the function of experiment in the identification of relevant parameters; how the phenomena under study are reconceived when accounted for by a model; and the interplay between experimenting, modeling, and simulation when results do not mesh. Highlighting the mediating role of models and the model-dependence (as well as theory-dependence) of data measurement, this volume proposes a normative and conceptual innovation in scientific modeling—that the phenomena to be investigated and modeled must not be precisely identified at the start but specified during the course of the interactions arising between experimental and modeling activities.

Contributors: Nancy D. Cartwright, U of California, San Diego; Anthony Chemero, U of Cincinnati; Ronald N. Giere, U of Minnesota; Jenann Ismael, U of Arizona; Tarja Knuuttila, U of South Carolina; Andrea Loettgers, U of Bern, Switzerland; Deborah Mayo, Virginia Tech; Joseph Rouse, Wesleyan U; Paul Teller, U of California, Davis; Michael Weisberg, U of Pennsylvania; Eric Winsberg, U of South Florida.

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Experiments in Ethics
Kwame Anthony Appiah
Harvard University Press, 2008

In the past few decades, scientists of human nature—including experimental and cognitive psychologists, neuroscientists, evolutionary theorists, and behavioral economists—have explored the way we arrive at moral judgments. They have called into question commonplaces about character and offered troubling explanations for various moral intuitions. Research like this may help explain what, in fact, we do and feel. But can it tell us what we ought to do or feel? In Experiments in Ethics, the philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah explores how the new empirical moral psychology relates to the age-old project of philosophical ethics.

Some moral theorists hold that the realm of morality must be autonomous of the sciences; others maintain that science undermines the authority of moral reasons. Appiah elaborates a vision of naturalism that resists both temptations. He traces an intellectual genealogy of the burgeoning discipline of "experimental philosophy," provides a balanced, lucid account of the work being done in this controversial and increasingly influential field, and offers a fresh way of thinking about ethics in the classical tradition.

Appiah urges that the relation between empirical research and morality, now so often antagonistic, should be seen in terms of dialogue, not contest. And he shows how experimental philosophy, far from being something new, is actually as old as philosophy itself. Beyond illuminating debates about the connection between psychology and ethics, intuition and theory, his book helps us to rethink the very nature of the philosophical enterprise.

[more]

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Extending Psychological Frontiers
Stanley Schachter
Russell Sage Foundation, 1989
Leon Festinger's forty-year scrutiny of that "curious animal, the modern human being" fundamentally transformed psychological thinking and shaped an entire scientific field, that of social psychology. The twenty-four papers brought together for the first time in Extending Psychological Frontiers encompass the classic contributions and critical turning points of Festinger's long career. Spanning the post-war decades, this unprecedented volume reveals the full scope, diversity, and import of Festinger's work. Its thematic arrangement clarifies the complex network of problems that preoccupied Festinger and the unique imaginative style that characterized his intellect. Whether examining the voting behavior of Catholics and Jews, the meaning of minute eye movements, the decisions of maze-running rats, or the proselytizing behavior of cultists, Festinger consistently transcended the traditional bounds of the discipline. His theory of cognitive dissonance, which describes how people attempt to resolve the tensions that result when they hold simultaneously two inconsistent beliefs, challenged preexisting psychological theories and produced more important ideas and experimentation than any other development in social psychology. Major writings on group dynamics, decision making, and perceptual processes further underscore the impact of Festinger's research not only on psychology, but also on a wide range of intellectual fronts, from literary theory to ethnology and from historical studies to contemporary political analysis. Extending Psychological Frontiers is an invaluable resource, providing a comprehensive and coherent picture of an extraordinary body of work.
[more]

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Fact or Fluke?
A Critical Look at Statistical Evidence
Ronald Meester
Amsterdam University Press, 2022

front cover of Fraud and Misconduct in Research
Fraud and Misconduct in Research
Detection, Investigation, and Organizational Response
Nachman Ben-Yehuda and Amalya Oliver-Lumerman
University of Michigan Press, 2017
In Fraud and Misconduct in Research, Nachman Ben-Yehuda and Amalya Oliver-Lumerman introduce the main characteristics of research misconduct, portray how the characteristics are distributed, and identify the elements of the organizational context and the practice of scientific research which enable or deter misconduct. Of the nearly 750 known cases between 1880 and 2010 which the authors examine, the overwhelming majority took place in funded research projects and involved falsification and fabrication, followed by misrepresentation and plagiarism. The incidents were often reported by the perpetrator’s colleagues or collaborators. If the accusations were confirmed, the organization usually punished the offender with temporary exclusion from academic activities and institutions launched organizational reforms, including new rules, the establishment of offices to deal with misconduct, and the creation of re-training and education programs for academic staff. Ben-Yehuda and Oliver-Lumerman suggest ways in which efforts to expose and prevent misconduct can further change the work of scientists, universities, and scientific research.

 
[more]

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From Galileo to Gell-Mann
The Wonder that Inspired the Greatest Scientists of All Time: In Their Own Words
Marco Bersanelli
Templeton Press, 2009
From time to time, the diligent science student huddled over dense volumes of research findings and highly technical data will stumble upon a truly rare treasure: the author’s answer to the question of, “Why?” Why did the authors of these volumes commit themselves so ardently to life in the laboratory? What was it that motivated them to keep their eye to microscope for years on end? Why did the world’s greatest scientists devote their lives to research—an endeavor where failure is the exponentially more likely outcome than success? In their new anthology, From Galileo to Gell-Mann, Marco Bersanelli and Mario Gargantini have gathered the answers to these fascinating questions from over one hundred of the brightest scientific minds from our past and our present. It is a goldmine of insight that previously could only to be found hidden deep within thousands of scattershot pages of footnotes from out-of-print journals, rare books, and unpublished papers. Throughout the work, Bersanelli and Gargantini also offer insightful commentary and discussion on the readings. Among the most remarkable similarities that emerge when one considers together these writings from the likes of Albert Einstein, Gregor Mendel, Marie Curie, and others, is the sense of wonder and outright awe at what the study of the natural world can reveal. From Galileo to Gell-Mann makes it clear that science and all parallel attempts to understand our human existence—including fields like philosophy to theology—are viewed as nothing less than grand adventures to those that are probing the limits of what we know.
[more]

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Global Atlas of Marine Fisheries
A Critical Appraisal of Catches and Ecosystem Impacts
Edited by Daniel Pauly and Dirk Zeller
Island Press, 2016
Until now, there has been only one source of data on global fishery catches: information reported to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations by member countries. An extensive, ten-year study conducted by The Sea Around Us Project of the University of British Columbia shows that this catch data is fundamentally misleading. Many countries underreport the amount of fish caught (some by as much as 500%), while others such as China significantly overreport their catches.
The Global Atlas of Marine Fisheries is the first and only book to provide accurate, country-by-country fishery data. This groundbreaking information has been gathered from independent sources by the world’s foremost fisheries experts, and edited by Daniel Pauly and Dirk Zeller of the Sea Around Us Project. The Atlas includes one-page reports on 273 countries and their territories, plus fourteen topical global chapters. National reports describe the state of the country's fishery, by sector; the policies, politics, and social factors affecting it; and potential solutions. The global chapters address cross-cutting issues, from the economics of fisheries to the impacts of mariculture. Extensive maps and graphics offer attractive and accessible visual representations.
While it has long been clear that the world’s oceans are in trouble, the lack of reliable data on fishery catches has obscured the scale, and nuances, of the crisis. The atlas shows that, globally, catches have declined rapidly since the 1980s, signaling an even more critical situation than previously understood. The Global Atlas of Marine Fisheries provides a comprehensive picture of our current predicament and steps that can be taken to ease it. For researchers, students, fishery managers, professionals in the fishing industry, and all others concerned with the status of the world’s fisheries, the Atlas will be an indispensable resource.  
[more]

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Good Enough
The Tolerance for Mediocrity in Nature and Society
Daniel S. Milo
Harvard University Press, 2019

In this spirited and irreverent critique of Darwin’s long hold over our imagination, a distinguished philosopher of science makes the case that, in culture as well as nature, not only the fittest survive: the world is full of the “good enough” that persist too.

Why is the genome of a salamander forty times larger than that of a human? Why does the avocado tree produce a million flowers and only a hundred fruits? Why, in short, is there so much waste in nature? In this lively and wide-ranging meditation on the curious accidents and unexpected detours on the path of life, Daniel Milo argues that we ask these questions because we’ve embraced a faulty conception of how evolution—and human society—really works.

Good Enough offers a vigorous critique of the quasi-monopoly that Darwin’s concept of natural selection has on our idea of the natural world. Darwinism excels in accounting for the evolution of traits, but it does not explain their excess in size and number. Many traits far exceed the optimal configuration to do the job, and yet the maintenance of this extra baggage does not prevent species from thriving for millions of years. Milo aims to give the messy side of nature its due—to stand up for the wasteful and inefficient organisms that nevertheless survive and multiply.

But he does not stop at the border between evolutionary theory and its social consequences. He argues provocatively that the theory of evolution through natural selection has acquired the trappings of an ethical system. Optimization, competitiveness, and innovation have become the watchwords of Western societies, yet their role in human lives—as in the rest of nature—is dangerously overrated. Imperfection is not just good enough: it may at times be essential to survival.

[more]

front cover of Heredity, Environment, and Personality
Heredity, Environment, and Personality
A Study of 850 Sets of Twins
By John C. Loehlin and Robert C. Nichols
University of Texas Press, 1976

This volume reports on a study of 850 pairs of twins who were tested to determine the influence of heredity and environment on individual differences in personality, ability, and interests. It presents the background, research design, and procedures of the study, a complete tabulation of the test results, and the authors’ extensive analysis of their findings. Based on one of the largest studies of twin behavior conducted in the twentieth century, the book challenges a number of traditional beliefs about genetic and environmental contributions to personality development.

The subjects were chosen from participants in the National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test of 1962 and were mailed a battery of personality and interest questionnaires. In addition, parents of the twins were sent questionnaires asking about the twins’ early experiences. A similar sample of nontwin students who had taken the merit exam provided a comparison group. The questions investigated included how twins are similar to or different from nontwins, how identical twins are similar to or different from fraternal twins, how the personalities and interests of twins reflect genetic factors, how the personalities and interests of twins reflect early environmental factors, and what implications these questions have for the general issue of how heredity and environment influence the development of psychological characteristics. In attempting to answer these questions, the authors shed light on the importance of both genes and environment and form the basis for different approaches in behavior genetic research.

[more]

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How Economics Shapes Science
Paula Stephan
Harvard University Press, 2015

The beauty of science may be pure and eternal, but the practice of science costs money. And scientists, being human, respond to incentives and costs, in money and glory. Choosing a research topic, deciding what papers to write and where to publish them, sticking with a familiar area or going into something new—the payoff may be tenure or a job at a highly ranked university or a prestigious award or a bump in salary. The risk may be not getting any of that.

At a time when science is seen as an engine of economic growth, Paula Stephan brings a keen understanding of the ongoing cost-benefit calculations made by individuals and institutions as they compete for resources and reputation. She shows how universities offload risks by increasing the percentage of non-tenure-track faculty, requiring tenured faculty to pay salaries from outside grants, and staffing labs with foreign workers on temporary visas. With funding tight, investigators pursue safe projects rather than less fundable ones with uncertain but potentially path-breaking outcomes. Career prospects in science are increasingly dismal for the young because of ever-lengthening apprenticeships, scarcity of permanent academic positions, and the difficulty of getting funded.

Vivid, thorough, and bold, How Economics Shapes Science highlights the growing gap between the haves and have-nots—especially the vast imbalance between the biomedical sciences and physics/engineering—and offers a persuasive vision of a more productive, more creative research system that would lead and benefit the world.

[more]

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How Experiments End
Peter Galison
University of Chicago Press, 1987
"Galison provides excellent histories of three experimental episodes: the measurement of the gyromagnetic ratio of the electron, the discovery of the mu meson, or muon, and the discovery of weak neutral currents. These studies of actual experiments will provide valuable material for both philosophers and historians of science and Galison's own thoughts on the nature of experiment are extremely important. . . . Galison has given both philosophers and historians much to think about. I strongly urge you to read this book."—Allan Franklin, British Journal of the Philosophy of Science

"Anyone who is seriously concerned with understanding how research is done should read this. There have been many books on one or another part of its subject matter but few giving such insights into how the research is done and how the consensus of discovery is arrived at."—Frank Close, New Scientist

"[Galison] is to be congratulated on producing a masterpiece in the field."—Michael Redhead, Synthese

"How Experiments End is a major historical work on an exciting topic."—Andy Pickering, Isis
[more]

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I Have Landed
The End of a Beginning in Natural History
Stephen Jay Gould
Harvard University Press, 2011
Gould’s final essay collection is based on his remarkable series for Natural History magazine—exactly 300 consecutive essays, with never a month missed, published from 1974 to 2001. Both an intellectually thrilling journey into the nature of scientific discovery and the most personal book he ever published.
[more]

front cover of Improving Decisionmaking in a Turbulent World
Improving Decisionmaking in a Turbulent World
Strategic Rethink
Charles P. Ries
RAND Corporation, 2016
Every president needs a decisionmaking system that harnesses the full capabilities and accumulated wisdom of the U.S. government and the nation’s many stakeholders. This Perspective analyzes a range of management challenges in the national security system and presents recommendations for strengthening U.S. decisionmaking and oversight of policy implementation.
[more]


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Labs of Our Own
Feminist Tinkerings with Science
Sig / Sara Giordano
Rutgers University Press, 2025
From climate change to COVID-19 to reproductive justice, there has been deep political polarization around science. Labs of Our Own provides a unique entry point into these twenty-first-century science wars by focusing on our affective relationships to science. The book delves into various sites where scientists, teachers, artists, and activists claim to create more democratic access to science—from DIY biology community labs to feminist classrooms to activist science practitioners. The reader will find that these claims for and attempts at democratic sciences not only impact what counts as science and who counts as a scientist but reconfigure who is included in the proper public. Instead of arguing for a knee-jerk defense of science against right-wing attacks, Labs of Our Own builds the case for a feminist, antiracist, decolonial, queer science tinkering practice that intentionally, politically, and ethically acts to produce new challenges to the definition and boundaries of the human.
[more]

front cover of Landscapes and Labscapes
Landscapes and Labscapes
Exploring the Lab-Field Border in Biology
Robert E. Kohler
University of Chicago Press, 2002
What is it like to do field biology in a world that exalts experiments and laboratories? How have field biologists assimilated laboratory values and practices, and crafted an exact, quantitative science without losing their naturalist souls?

In Landscapes and Labscapes, Robert E. Kohler explores the people, places, and practices of field biology in the United States from the 1890s to the 1950s. He takes readers into the fields and forests where field biologists learned to count and measure nature and to read the imperfect records of "nature's experiments." He shows how field researchers use nature's particularities to develop "practices of place" that achieve in nature what laboratory researchers can only do with simplified experiments. Using historical frontiers as models, Kohler shows how biologists created vigorous new border sciences of ecology and evolutionary biology.
[more]

front cover of Leading Edges in Social and Behavioral Science
Leading Edges in Social and Behavioral Science
R. Duncan Luce
Russell Sage Foundation, 1990
The reach of the social and behavioral sciences is currently so broad and interdisciplinary that staying abreast of developments has become a daunting task. The thirty papers that constitute Leading Edges in Social and Behavioral Science provide a unique composite picture of recent findings and promising new research opportunities within most areas of social and behavioral research. Prepared by expert scholars under the auspices of the National Academy of Sciences, these timely and well-documented reports define research priorities for an impressive range of topics: Part I: Mind and Brain Part II: Behavior in Social Context Part III: Choice and Allocation Part IV: Evolving Institutions Part V: Societies and International Orders Part VI: Data and Analysis
[more]

front cover of The Life of a Virus
The Life of a Virus
Tobacco Mosaic Virus as an Experimental Model, 1930-1965
Angela N. H. Creager
University of Chicago Press, 2001
We normally think of viruses in terms of the devastating diseases they cause, from smallpox to AIDS. But in The Life of a Virus, Angela N. H. Creager introduces us to a plant virus that has taught us much of what we know about all viruses, including the lethal ones, and that also played a crucial role in the development of molecular biology.

Focusing on the tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) research conducted in Nobel laureate Wendell Stanley's lab, Creager argues that TMV served as a model system for virology and molecular biology, much as the fruit fly and laboratory mouse have for genetics and cancer research. She examines how the experimental techniques and instruments Stanley and his colleagues developed for studying TMV were generalized not just to other labs working on TMV, but also to research on other diseases such as poliomyelitis and influenza and to studies of genes and cell organelles. The great success of research on TMV also helped justify increased spending on biomedical research in the postwar years (partly through the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis's March of Dimes)—a funding priority that has continued to this day.
[more]

front cover of The Long Shadow of Temperament
The Long Shadow of Temperament
Jerome Kagan and Nancy Snidman
Harvard University Press, 2009

We have seen these children—the shy and the sociable, the cautious and the daring—and wondered what makes one avoid new experience and another avidly pursue it. At the crux of the issue surrounding the contribution of nature to development is the study that Jerome Kagan and his colleagues have been conducting for more than two decades. In The Long Shadow of Temperament, Kagan and Nancy Snidman summarize the results of this unique inquiry into human temperaments, one of the best-known longitudinal studies in developmental psychology. These results reveal how deeply certain fundamental temperamental biases can be preserved over development.

Identifying two extreme temperamental types—inhibited and uninhibited in childhood, and high-reactive and low-reactive in very young babies—Kagan and his colleagues returned to these children as adolescents. Surprisingly, one of the temperaments revealed in infancy predicted a cautious, fearful personality in early childhood and a dour mood in adolescence. The other bias predicted a bold childhood personality and an exuberant, sanguine mood in adolescence. These personalities were matched by different biological properties. In a masterly summary of their wide-ranging exploration, Kagan and Snidman conclude that these two temperaments are the result of inherited biologies probably rooted in the differential excitability of particular brain structures. Though the authors appreciate that temperamental tendencies can be modified by experience, this compelling work—an empirical and conceptual tour-de-force—shows how long the shadow of temperament is cast over psychological development.

[more]

front cover of Long Shot
Long Shot
Vaccines for National Defense
Kendall Hoyt
Harvard University Press, 2012

At the turn of the twenty-first century, the United States contended with a state-run biological warfare program, bioterrorism, and a pandemic. Together, these threats spurred large-scale government demand for new vaccines, but few have materialized. A new anthrax vaccine has been a priority since the first Gulf War, but twenty years and a billion dollars later, the United States still does not have one. This failure is startling.

Historically, the United States has excelled at responding to national health emergencies. World War II era programs developed ten new or improved vaccines, often in time to meet the objectives of particular military missions. Probing the history of vaccine development for factors that foster timely innovation, Kendall Hoyt discovered that vaccine innovation has been falling, not rising, since World War II. This finding is at odds with prevailing theories of market-based innovation and suggests that a collection of nonmarket factors drove mid-century innovation. Ironically, many late-twentieth-century developments that have been celebrated as a boon for innovation—the birth of a biotechnology industry and the rise of specialization and outsourcing—undercut the collaborative networks and research practices that drove successful vaccine projects in the past.

Hoyt’s timely investigation teaches important lessons for our efforts to rebuild twenty-first-century biodefense capabilities, especially when the financial payback for a particular vaccine is low, but the social returns are high.

[more]

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Looking at Lives
American Longitudinal Studies of the Twentieth Century
Erin Phelps
Russell Sage Foundation, 2002
The impact of long-term longitudinal studies on the landscape of twentieth century social and behavioral science cannot be overstated. The field of life course studies has grown exponentially since its inception in the 1950s, and now influences methodologies as well as expectations for all academic research. Looking at Lives offers an unprecedented "insider's view" into the intentions, methods, and findings of researchers engaged in some of the 20th century's landmark studies. In this volume, eminent American scholars—many of them pioneers in longitudinal studies—provide frank and illuminating insights into the difficulties and the unique scientific benefits of mounting studies that track people's lives over a long period of time. Looking at Lives includes studies from a range of disciplines, including psychology, sociology, and education, which together cover a span of more than fifty years. The contributors pay particular attention to the changing historical, cultural, and scientific context of their work, as well as the theoretical and methodological changes that have occurred in their fields over decades. What emerges is a clear indication of the often unexpected effects these studies have had on public policies and public opinion—especially as they relate to such issues as the connection between poverty and criminal behavior, or the consequences of teen-age pregnancy and drug use for inner-city youth. For example, David Weikart reveals how his long-term research on preschool intervention projects, begun in 1959, permitted him to show how surprisingly effective preschool education can be in improving the lives of disadvantaged children. In another study, John Laub and Robert Sampson build on findings from a groundbreaking study begun by Sheldon and Eleanor Glueck in the 1950s to reveal the myriad ways in which juvenile delinquency can predict criminal behavior in adults. And Arland Thornton, Ronald Freedman, and William Axinn employ an intergenerational study of women and their children begun in 1962 to examine the substantial relaxation of social mores for family and individual behavior in the latter decades of the 20th century. Looking at Lives is full of striking testimony to the importance of long-term, longitudinal studies. As a unique chronicle of the origins and development of longitudinal studies in America, this collection will be an invaluable aid to 21st century investigators who seek to build on the successes and the experiences of the pioneers in life-course studies.
[more]

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Materiality
Daniel Miller, ed.
Duke University Press, 2005
Throughout history and across social and cultural contexts, most systems of belief—whether religious or secular—have ascribed wisdom to those who see reality as that which transcends the merely material. Yet, as the studies collected here show, the immaterial is not easily separated from the material. Humans are defined, to an extraordinary degree, by their expressions of immaterial ideals through material forms. The essays in Materiality explore varied manifestations of materiality from ancient times to the present. In assessing the fundamental role of materiality in shaping humanity, they signal the need to decenter the social within social anthropology in order to make room for the material.

Considering topics as diverse as theology, technology, finance, and art, the contributors—most of whom are anthropologists—examine the many different ways in which materiality has been understood and the consequences of these differences. Their case studies show that the latest forms of financial trading instruments can be compared with the oldest ideals of ancient Egypt, that the promise of software can be compared with an age-old desire for an unmediated relationship to divinity. Whether focusing on the theology of Islamic banking, Australian Aboriginal art, derivatives trading in Japan, or textiles that respond directly to their environment, each essay adds depth and nuance to the project that Materiality advances: a profound acknowledgment and rethinking of one of the basic properties of being human.

Contributors. Matthew Engelke, Webb Keane, Susanne Küchler, Bill Maurer, Lynn Meskell, Daniel Miller, Hirokazu Miyazaki, Fred Myers, Christopher Pinney, Michael Rowlands, Nigel Thrift

[more]

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Methods That Matter
Integrating Mixed Methods for More Effective Social Science Research
Edited by M. Cameron Hay
University of Chicago Press, 2016
To do research that really makes a difference—the authors of this book argue—social scientists need questions and methods that reflect the complexity of the world. Bringing together a consortium of voices across a variety of fields, Methods that Matter offers compelling and successful examples of mixed methods research that do just that. In case after case, the researchers here break out of the traditional methodological silos that have long separated social science disciplines in order to better describe the intricacies of our personal and social worlds.
           
Historically, the largest division between social science methods has been that between quantitative and qualitative measures. For people trained in psychology or sociology, the bias has been toward the former, using surveys and experiments that yield readily comparable numerical results. For people trained in anthropology, it has been toward the latter, using ethnographic observations and interviews that offer richer nuances of meaning but are difficult to compare across societies. Discussing their own endeavors to combine the quantitative with the qualitative, the authors invite readers into a conversation about the best designs and practices of mixed methodologies to stimulate creative ideas and find new pathways of insight. The result is an engaging exploration of a promising new approach to the social sciences. 
[more]

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Mixed Methods Research
Exploring the Interactive Continuum
Carolyn S. Ridenour and Isadore Newman
Southern Illinois University Press, 2008

In Mixed Methods Research: Exploring the Interactive Continuum, the second edition of Qualitative-Quantitative Research Methodology, authors Carolyn S. Ridenour and Isadore Newman reject the artificial dichotomy between qualitative and quantitative research strategies in the social and behavioral sciences and argue that the two approaches are neither mutually exclusive nor interchangeable; rather, the actual relationship between the two paradigms is one of isolated events on a continuum of scientific inquiry.

            In their original model for research—the “interactive continuum”—Ridenour and Newman emphasize four major points: that the research question dictates the selection of research methods; that consistency between question and design can lead to a method of critiquing research studies in journals; that the interactive continuum model is built around the place of theory; and that the assurance of validity of research is central to all studies.  With this edition, the authors incorporate the concept of research purpose into their analysis.

To contextualize their new argument and to propose strategies for enhancement, Ridenour and Newman review the historical and contemporary debates around research frameworks and define the nature of scientific validity. Establishing five criteria that render a study “scientific,” they propose ways to strengthen validity in research design.  They argue that by employing multiple methods, researchers may enhance the quality of their research outcomes. By integrating the quantitative research standards of internal and external validity and the qualitative research standards of trustworthiness, Ridenour and Newman suggest a principle for mixed methods research.

            Ridenour and Newman apply this theoretical concept to a systematic analysis of four published research studies, with special emphasis on the consistency among research purpose, question, and design.

Ridenour and Newman have completely rewritten their conclusions in light of their evolving analyses.  They incorporate their most recent ideas into the qualitative-quantitative continuum and emphasize the “model of consistency” as key for research to meet the standard of “scientific.”

This book occupies a vital place at the junction of methodological theory and scientific practice and makes connections between the traditionally separate realms of quantitative and qualitative research. 

[more]

front cover of The Nature of Scientific Evidence
The Nature of Scientific Evidence
Statistical, Philosophical, and Empirical Considerations
Edited by Mark L. Taper and Subhash R. Lele
University of Chicago Press, 2004
An exploration of the statistical foundations of scientific inference, The Nature of Scientific Evidence asks what constitutes scientific evidence and whether scientific evidence can be quantified statistically. Mark Taper, Subhash Lele, and an esteemed group of contributors explore the relationships among hypotheses, models, data, and inference on which scientific progress rests in an attempt to develop a new quantitative framework for evidence. Informed by interdisciplinary discussions among scientists, philosophers, and statisticians, they propose a new "evidential" approach, which may be more in keeping with the scientific method. The Nature of Scientific Evidence persuasively argues that all scientists should care more about the fine points of statistical philosophy because therein lies the connection between theory and data.

Though the book uses ecology as an exemplary science, the interdisciplinary evaluation of the use of statistics in empirical research will be of interest to any reader engaged in the quantification and evaluation of data.
[more]

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Observation and Experiment
An Introduction to Causal Inference
Paul R. Rosenbaum
Harvard University Press, 2017

A daily glass of wine prolongs life—yet alcohol can cause life-threatening cancer. Some say raising the minimum wage will decrease inequality while others say it increases unemployment. Scientists once confidently claimed that hormone replacement therapy reduced the risk of heart disease but now they equally confidently claim it raises that risk. What should we make of this endless barrage of conflicting claims?

Observation and Experiment is an introduction to causal inference by one of the field’s leading scholars. An award-winning professor at Wharton, Paul Rosenbaum explains key concepts and methods through lively examples that make abstract principles accessible. He draws his examples from clinical medicine, economics, public health, epidemiology, clinical psychology, and psychiatry to explain how randomized control trials are conceived and designed, how they differ from observational studies, and what techniques are available to mitigate their bias.

“Carefully and precisely written…reflecting superb statistical understanding, all communicated with the skill of a master teacher.”
—Stephen M. Stigler, author of The Seven Pillars of Statistical Wisdom

“An excellent introduction…Well-written and thoughtful…from one of causal inference’s noted experts.”
Journal of the American Statistical Association

“Rosenbaum is a gifted expositor…an outstanding introduction to the topic for anyone who is interested in understanding the basic ideas and approaches to causal inference.”
Psychometrika

“A very valuable contribution…Highly recommended.”
International Statistical Review

[more]

front cover of Preprints
Preprints
Their Evolving Role in Science Communication
Iratxe Puebla
Against the Grain, LLC, 2022
This briefing discusses the history and role of preprints in the biological sciences within the evolving open science landscape. The focus is on the explosive growth of preprints as a publishing model and the associated challenges of maintaining technical infrastructure and establishing sustainable business models. A preprint is a scholarly manuscript posted by the author(s) to a repository or platform to facilitate open and broad sharing of early work without any limitations to access. Currently there are more than 60 preprint servers representing different subject and geographical domains, each one evolving at a different based on adoption patterns and disciplinary ethos. This briefing will offer invaluable help to those who wish to understand this rapidly evolving publishing model.
[more]

front cover of Profiles of Social Research
Profiles of Social Research
The Scientific Study of Human Interaction
Morton M. Hunt
Russell Sage Foundation, 1985
This splendid introduction to social research describes an area of scientific investigation that profoundly influences our daily lives and thoughts, but about which most of us know very little. We can picture a research chemist at work, white-coated and surrounded by beakers and test tubes—but what is the nature of social research? For interested general readers and particularly for students entering the various social science fields, Morton Hunt paints an immensely informative and accessible portrait. He begins with a lucid overview of the important varieties of social research, describing their advantages and limitations. Against this background, Hunt then details five remarkable case histories, eyewitness accounts of significant recent episodes in social research. Woven skillfully through each narrative are explorations of the basic methodological, practical, moral and political issues raised by social research. The story of a noteworthy series of sociopsychological experiments on teamwork, for example, enables Hunt to weigh the merits of using a laboratory setting to study social behavior and the ethics of deceiving human subjects. In similar fashion, Hunt depicts a historic cross-sectional survey on segregated schooling; a complex attempt to measure the impact of welfare programs; a real-world experiment with guaranteed annual incomes; and a path-breaking study of human aging that followed its subjects for a generation. This engaging and intelligent book will give readers a new understanding of the breadth and richness of social research as well as an informed appreciation of its significance for their lives.
[more]

front cover of Qualitative-Quantitative Research Methodology
Qualitative-Quantitative Research Methodology
Exploring the Interactive Continuum
Isadore Newman and Carolyn R. Benz
Southern Illinois University Press, 1998

Rejecting the artificial dichotomy between qualitative and quantitative research strategies in the social and behavioral sciences, Isadore Newman and Carolyn R. Benz argue that the two approaches are neither mutually exclusive nor interchangeable; rather, the actual relationship between the two paradigms is one of isolated events on a continuum of scientific inquiry.

Through graphic and narrative descriptions, Newman and Benz show research to be a holistic endeavor in the world of inquiry. To clarify their argument, they provide a diagram of the "qualitative-quantitative interactive continuum" showing that qualitative analysis with its feedback loops can easily modify the types of research questions asked in quantitative research and that the quantitative results and its feedback can change what will be asked qualitatively.

In their model for research—an "interactive continuum"—Newman and Benz emphasize four major points: the research question dictates the selection of research methods; consistency between question and design can lead to a method of critiquing research studies in professional journals; the interactive continuum model is built around the place of theory; and the assurance of "validity" of research is central to all studies.

[more]

front cover of Research Directions of Black Psychologists
Research Directions of Black Psychologists
Wade Boykin
Russell Sage Foundation, 1979
Focusing on issues of particular importance to black people, and confronting the rich variety and the complexity of the black experience, the many contributors demonstrate the broad diversity of research interests and strategies among black psychologists, from the traditional to the innovative. Topics covered include studies of motivation, cognitive development, life-span development, and cultural difference versus deficit theories. Many of the studies directly refute previous conceptions of the psychological functioning of blacks and offer alternative models and formulations. This book is the first to present soundly designed and executed research that is emphatically linked to the perspectives and the psychological concerns of black Americans. In designing these studies, the authors aimed to ameliorate the pressing educational and social problems of blacks through a better understanding of their life conditions.
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Research On Altruism & Love
Stephen Post
Templeton Press, 2003

 

Research on Altruism and Love is a compendium of annotated bibliographies reviewing literature and research studies on the nature of love. An essay introduces each of the annotated bibliographies.

A variety of literature directly related to science-and-love issues or supporting those issues is covered in the Religious Love Interfaces with Science section. This annotated bibliography is unique in that it approaches the field from a decidedly religious perspective. It includes classical expositions of love that continue to influence contemporary scholars, including Platos' work on eros, the work and words of Jesus, Aristotle, Augustine of Hippo, Martin Luther, Kierkegaard, and Ghandi, among others. The contemporary discussion includes Anders Nygren's theological arguments in his classic, Agape and Eros; Pitirim Sorokin; and others. An issue that often emerges in this literature is the question of the nature and definition of love.

A second annotated bibliography features current empirical research in the field of Personality and Altruism, with a focus on social psychology. Among the topics covered are the altruistic personality, altruistic behavior, empathy, helping behavior, social responsibility, and volunteerism. Methodologies are diverse, and studies include experiments, local and national surveys, naturalistic observation, and combinations of these.

The Evolutionary Biology annotated bibliography covers the most significant works on altruism and love in the field of biology and evolutionary psychology.

The fourth and final annotated bibliography in this volume is entitled Sociology of Faith-Based Volunteerism. Here the focus is on literature on the interface of helping behavior and religious organizations, as well as major pieces on voluntary associations.

 

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Researching American Culture
A Guide for Student Anthropologists
Conrad Phillip Kottak, Editor
University of Michigan Press, 1982

Conducting original fieldwork is a science and an art.  Anthropology students can easily get an A in Aborigines without ever understanding their own tribal behavior.  American culture, like all others, has its share of ritual and myths, ranging from singles bars to sports events.  This volume guides undergraduate students to correct scientific methods and successful personal approaches in their work.

Researching American Culture covers the universe of ethnography: the researcher’s role, interviewing, questionnaire construction, ethics, coping with the limitations of time and space.  Guides for researchers, original research papers by undergraduates, and essays by professional anthropologists are all included. By applying anthropological techniques to today’’s behavior, students learn to be objective about their own culture and skeptical about practices rarely questioned.

 

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Russia's Military Interventions
Patterns, Drivers, and Signposts
Samuel Charap
RAND Corporation, 2021
Despite Russia’s relatively small global economic footprint, it has engaged in more interventions than any other U.S. competitor since the end of the Cold War. In this report, the authors assess when, where, and why Russia conducts military interventions by analyzing the 25 interventions that Russia has undertaken since 1991, including detailed case studies of the 2008 Russia-Georgia War and Moscow’s involvement in the ongoing Syrian civil war.
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A Safe Place
Laying the Groundwork of Psychotherapy
Leston Havens
Harvard University Press, 1987
Drawing on his rich experience within psychiatry, Leston Havens takes the reader on an extraordinary journey through the vast and changing landscape of psychotherapy and psychiatry today. Closely examining the dynamics of the doctor–patient exchange, he seeks to locate and describe the elusive therapeutic environment within which psychological healing most effectively takes place.
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Science and the University
Edited by Paula E. Stephan and Ronald G. Ehrenberg
University of Wisconsin Press, 2007
Science and the University investigates the tremendous changes that have taken place in university research over the past several decades, gauging the current state of research in higher education and examining issues and challenges crucial to its future. Scientific research increasingly dominates the aims and agendas of many American universities, and this proliferation—and changes in the way research is conducted—has given rise to important questions about the interrelations of higher education, funding for scientific research, and government policy. The cost of doing science, the commercialization of university research, the changing composition and number of Ph.D. students, the effect of scientific research on other university programs—these are just a few of the many issues explored in this volume from the vantage points of scholars in such diverse fields as economics, biochemistry, genetics, and labor studies.
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The Scientific Method
An Evolution of Thinking from Darwin to Dewey
Henry M. Cowles
Harvard University Press, 2020

The surprising history of the scientific method—from an evolutionary account of thinking to a simple set of steps—and the rise of psychology in the nineteenth century.

The idea of a single scientific method, shared across specialties and teachable to ten-year-olds, is just over a hundred years old. For centuries prior, science had meant a kind of knowledge, made from facts gathered through direct observation or deduced from first principles. But during the nineteenth century, science came to mean something else: a way of thinking.

The Scientific Method tells the story of how this approach took hold in laboratories, the field, and eventually classrooms, where science was once taught as a natural process. Henry M. Cowles reveals the intertwined histories of evolution and experiment, from Charles Darwin’s theory of natural selection to John Dewey’s vision for science education. Darwin portrayed nature as akin to a man of science, experimenting through evolution, while his followers turned his theory onto the mind itself. Psychologists reimagined the scientific method as a problem-solving adaptation, a basic feature of cognition that had helped humans prosper. This was how Dewey and other educators taught science at the turn of the twentieth century—but their organic account was not to last. Soon, the scientific method was reimagined as a means of controlling nature, not a product of it. By shedding its roots in evolutionary theory, the scientific method came to seem far less natural, but far more powerful.

This book reveals the origin of a fundamental modern concept. Once seen as a natural adaptation, the method soon became a symbol of science’s power over nature, a power that, until recently, has rarely been called into question.

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Selected Writings of Selma Fraiberg
Louis Fraiberg
The Ohio State University Press, 1987
Social worker, psychoanalyst, and child-development expert Selma Fraiberg’s iconic book, The Magic Years, has influenced generations of caregivers, therapists, and clinicians since its publication in 1959. No less rich are the essays that make up this new, accessibly priced reissue of her Selected Writings.
 
Like The Magic Years, these essays (including her hugely influential “Ghosts in the Nursery”) glean their insights from years of clinical study and contain Fraiberg’s synthesis of and groundbreaking contributions to attachment theory, child psychology, social work, and, through her work with blind children, the experience of disability in infancy and childhood. Clinical rigor paired with attunement to the emotional lives of her subjects was Fraiberg’s hallmark: as her husband Louis writes in his preface to this volume, “Once, when asked how she knew what babies were thinking, she replied, ‘They tell me.’” Lucid and elegantly written, her Selected Writings will remain a valuable resource for new generations of social workers, mental-health professionals, educators, and others who work with young children.
 
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Social Awakening
Adolescent Behavior as Adulthood Approaches
Robert T. Michael
Russell Sage Foundation, 2001
While headlines about violent crimes committed by adolescents often capture the public's attention, many more young people excel in the classroom, on the athletic field, and in the community. Why do some youngsters strive to achieve while others court disaster? Using new data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY), a survey of more than nine thousand young people between the ages of twelve and sixteen, Social Awakening explores the choices adolescents make about their lives and their futures. The book focuses on the key role the family plays as teenagers navigate the difficult transition from childhood to adulthood. Social Awakening analyzes a wide range of adolescent behavior and issues that affect teenagers' lives—from their dating and sexual behavior, drug and alcohol use, and physical and mental well-being, to their career goals and expectations for the future. The findings strengthen our understanding of how an array of family characteristics—single parenthood, income, educational level, race, and geographical location—influences teens' lives. One contributor explores why children from single-parent families are more likely to perform poorly in school and to indulge in risky behavior, such as drug abuse or promiscuous sexual activity. Another chapter examines why children of parents with a college degree are less likely to engage in early sexual activity. And another looks at different levels of criminal behavior among urban and rural youths. One of the advantages of an in-depth interview such as the NLSY is the wide array of behavior and experiences by the same youths that can be mutually investigated. The analysis in Social Awakening helps confirm or refute what we think we know—to explore what we could not explore with older or less complex surveys. The NLSY, which forms the foundation of Social Awakening, will be updated annually over the coming decades to enable experts to learn how those who were adolescents at the dawn of the twenty-first century handled the move to adulthood. Social Awakening provides a compelling first look at these young peoples' lives.
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The Soul of the Helper
Seven Stages to Seeing the Sacred within Yourself So You Can See It in Others
Holly K. Oxhandler
Templeton Press, 2025
There are many kinds of helpers in our world, the caregivers among us. They are the social workers who serve the vulnerable, the nurses and doctors who treat the ill, the teachers who instruct the young, the first responders who rescue the imperiled, the faith leaders who comfort the congregation, the volunteers who support the community. And whether or not it is our professional calling, each of us is likely to serve as a caregiver at some point in our lives, as a parent raising a child, for instance, or as a loved one caring for an aging relative. These and many other efforts to serve are among the most noble pursuits we can imagine, but they come with a danger worth recognizing. 

In their devotion to the well-being of others, caregivers routinely put their own well-being  last and can unintentionally burn themselves out physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Their self-neglect, paired alongside a deep desire to help others, has the potential to stir up feelings of anger and resentment, leading to a sense of guilt and shame. They often believe that if they were to grant themselves any rest or grace, they would be at risk of failing in their duty. 

In The Soul of the Helper, Dr. Holly K. Oxhandler shows caregivers and fellow helpers a more self-compassionate way to cope with their overwhelming responsibilities and to attend to their own needs, particularly when it comes to their mental health and spiritual journey. She invites them to pause and realize that if they let their personal resources run dry, they cannot possibly care for others as fully as they wish. In fact, their efforts are likely to cause more harm than good. 

With a background in spiritually-integrated mental health, Dr. Oxhandler teaches helpers a seven-step process to slow down and reconnect with the stillness within themselves. It is in this space of stillness that Oxhandler guides helpers to reconnect with the “sacred spark” within their soul. By allowing themselves to enter that stillness, caregivers will recognize that they, too, are worthy of care. And with that realization, they will see anew the sacred spark that dwells inside everyone else, especially within those they’re helping.

As a social worker, researcher, and person of faith, Dr. Oxhandler writes in a warm and welcoming style, shares many relatable stories, and widens her scope to include believers of all faiths and spiritual traditions. Her book is for caregivers everywhere who sense the sacred spark within them saying, in effect: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
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The Strategic Perspective and Long-Term Socioeconomic Strategies for Israel
Key Methods with an Application to Aging
Steven W. Popper
RAND Corporation, 2015
RAND researchers supported a high-level Israeli government team tasked with improving long-term socioeconomic strategy for the state. This report highlights selected inputs made to the government team to summarize the essential mechanics and roles for bringing a strategic perspective to policy consideration. To show how one can use a strategic perspective in an analysis of policy choices, the report uses the example of an aging population.
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Suffering Made Real
American Science and the Survivors at Hiroshima
M. Susan Lindee
University of Chicago Press, 1994
The atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August of 1945 unleashed a force as mysterious as it was deadly—radioactivity. In 1946, the United States government created the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission (ABCC) to serve as a permanent agency in Japan with the official mission of studying the medical effects of radiation on the survivors. The next ten years saw the ABCC's most intensive research on the genetic effects of radiation, and up until 1974 the ABCC scientists published papers on the effects of radiation on aging, life span, fertility, and disease.

Suffering Made Real is the first comprehensive history of the ABCC's research on how radiation affected the survivors of the atomic bomb. Arguing that Cold War politics and cultural values fundamentally shaped the work of the ABCC, M. Susan Lindee tells the compelling story of a project that raised disturbing questions about the ethical implications of using human subjects in scientific research.
How did the politics of the emerging Cold War affect the scientists' biomedical research and findings? How did the ABCC document and publicly present the effects of radiation? Why did the ABCC refuse to provide medical treatment to the survivors? Through a detailed examination of ABCC policies, archival materials, the minutes of committee meetings, newspaper accounts, and interviews with ABCC scientists, Lindee explores how political and cultural interests were reflected in the day-to-day operations of this controversial research program.

Set against a period of conflicting views of nuclear weapons and nuclear power, Suffering Made Real follows the course of a politically charged research program and reveals in detail how politics and cultural values can shape the conduct, results, and uses of science.
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Taking Society's Measure
A Personal History of Survey Research
Herbert Hyman
Russell Sage Foundation, 1991
How are we, as members of a society, informed of conditions that affect our social welfare? How does the government register the impact of its actions on its citizens? The turbulent 1930s saw the emergence of sample survey research as an increasingly valuable technique of social inquiry. Perhaps no one championed this nascent discipline as vigorously as Herbert Hyman, one of those pioneering investigators whose talents were so closely associated with the rapid growth of survey research that their professional careers and reputations became virtually indistinguishable from the field itself. Hyman's personal account is a remarkable contribution to the history and sociology of social research. His experiences with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Office of War Information, the U.S. Bombing Surveys of Germany and Japan, the National Opinion Research Center, and the Bureau of Applied Social Research are all documented with fascinating insight into the critical events and prominent individuals that shaped the field of survey research between the late 1930s and the late 1950s.
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They Went to College
A Study of 951 Former University Students
C. Robert Pace
University of Minnesota Press, 1941

They Went to College was first published in 1941. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

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Time and Decision
Economic and Psychological Perspectives of Intertemporal Choice
George Loewenstein
Russell Sage Foundation, 2003
How do people decide whether to sacrifice now for a future reward or to enjoy themselves in the present? Do the future gains of putting money in a pension fund outweigh going to Hawaii for New Year's Eve? Why does a person's self-discipline one day often give way to impulsive behavior the next? Time and Decision takes up these questions with a comprehensive collection of new research on intertemporal choice, examining how people face the problem of deciding over time. Economists approach intertemporal choice by means of a model in which people discount the value of future events at a constant rate. A vacation two years from now is worth less to most people than a vacation next week. Psychologists, on the other hand, have focused on the cognitive and emotional underpinnings of intertemporal choice. Time and Decision draws from both disciplinary approaches to provide a comprehensive picture of the various layers of choice involved. Shane Frederick, George Loewenstein, and Ted O'Donoghue introduce the volume with an overview of the research on time discounting and focus on how people actually discount the future compared to the standard economic model. Alex Kacelnik discusses the crucial role that the ability to delay gratification must have played in evolution. Walter Mischel and colleagues review classic research showing that four year olds who are able to delay gratification subsequently grow up to perform better in college than their counterparts who chose instant gratification. The book also delves into the neurobiology of patience, examining the brain structures involved in the ability to withstand an impulse. Turning to the issue of self-control, Klaus Wertenbroch examines the relationship between consumption and available resources, showing, for example, how a high credit limit can lead people to overspend. Ted O'Donoghue and Matthew Rabin show how people's awareness of their self-control problems affects their decision-making. The final section of the book examines intertemporal choice with regard to health, drug addiction, dieting, marketing, savings, and public policy. All of us make important decisions every day-many of which profoundly affect the quality of our lives. Time and Decision provides a fascinating look at the complex factors involved in how and why we make our choices, so many of them short-sighted, and helps us understand more precisely this crucial human frailty.
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A Time for Wisdom
Knowledge, Detachment, Tranquility, Transcendence
Paul T. McLaughlin
Templeton Press, 2022

These are volatile times. Fear, suspicion, and cynicism are chronic. A mere tweet inflames the passions of millions while click-bait “hot takes” stoke the amygdalas of everyone with an Internet connection.  We treat those not in our tribe as a threat and deem anyone with a different opinion as evil. Mistaking myopia for measure, we lack all sense of proportion in our judgments. We are shortsighted, mired in the present, ignorant of history, and blind to the future. We thought that technology would save us by connecting us to each other and the world’s information. Instead, it enticed our vices, encouraged our biases, and eroded the one virtue we need now more than ever: wisdom.

A Time for Wisdom is for readers who feel beleaguered by the incivility of the modern world, dispirited by its coarse rhetoric and toxic partisanship. It is an invitation to escape the shallow cacophony and restore peace and perspective to our daily lives. Written by two psychologists, the book takes the best scientific research on wisdom and integrates it with timeless concepts that have, for ages, guided troubled souls through life’s hardships. From this foundation, the authors present four steps we can follow to practice wisdom in the 21st Century:

  1. Receiving knowledge.
  2. Practicing detachment.
  3. Experiencing tranquility.
  4. Cultivating transcendence.

These are profound and spiritual principles that can bring us immense satisfaction when we aspire to live by them.

In A Time for Wisdom, the authors show us how. They commend a course of action towards the Good, the True, and the Beautiful, towards calm and clear moral reasoning. They lead us out of the circus of contemporary life and show us a path beyond our petty self-centeredness. By journeying along that path, we can, like the great sages and scientists before us, rise above the immediacy of the moment and partake of the numinous and the infinite.

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Triumphs of Experience
The Men of the Harvard Grant Study
George E. Vaillant
Harvard University Press, 2012

At a time when many people around the world are living into their tenth decade, the longest longitudinal study of human development ever undertaken offers some welcome news for the new old age: our lives continue to evolve in our later years, and often become more fulfilling than before.

Begun in 1938, the Grant Study of Adult Development charted the physical and emotional health of over 200 men, starting with their undergraduate days. The now-classic Adaptation to Life reported on the men’s lives up to age 55 and helped us understand adult maturation. Now George Vaillant follows the men into their nineties, documenting for the first time what it is like to flourish far beyond conventional retirement.

Reporting on all aspects of male life, including relationships, politics and religion, coping strategies, and alcohol use (its abuse being by far the greatest disruptor of health and happiness for the study’s subjects), Triumphs of Experience shares a number of surprising findings. For example, the people who do well in old age did not necessarily do so well in midlife, and vice versa. While the study confirms that recovery from a lousy childhood is possible, memories of a happy childhood are a lifelong source of strength. Marriages bring much more contentment after age 70, and physical aging after 80 is determined less by heredity than by habits formed prior to age 50. The credit for growing old with grace and vitality, it seems, goes more to ourselves than to our stellar genetic makeup.

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The Trouble with Science
Robin Dunbar
Harvard University Press, 1996
In The Trouble with Science, Robin Dunbar asks whether science really is unique to Western culture, even to humankind. He suggests that our "trouble with science"--our inability to grasp how it works, our suspiciousness of its successes--may lie in the fact that evolution has left our minds better able to cope with day-to-day social interaction than with the complexities of the external world.
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Unexpected Grace
Stories of Faith, Science, and Altruism
Bill Kramer
Templeton Press, 2007

In Unexpected Grace Bill Kramer offers a rare look into the human side of the world of scientific research. He goes behind the scenes of four scientific investigations on diverse aspects of the study of unlimited love and offers uplifting portraits of human beings struggling to understand and improve the complex issues facing them. He explores the dynamics between the researchers, the subjects they study, and the participants in the studies, and eloquently tells their personal stories. The stories touch on vastly different social and human issues, but all are connected by love.

The first is the story of Courtney Cowart, who was part of a group of theologians who met at Trinity Place in lower Manhattan on September 11, 2001, not knowing her experience would become the subject of a study. The story of how the group struggled to survive and the formation of a practical, effective altruistic community is heartrending and inspiring. This is followed by a description of a University of California Santa Cruz psychology department study on the dynamics of friendship and prejudice that completely changed the perceptions of those involved.

The third study, from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, focused on the benefits of religion on mental and physical health, which led its researcher to a greater understanding of forgiveness, humility, and grace. The final powerful story is about a physiology of love study conducted in Iowa City. Here, a functional MRI is the vehicle for measuring empathy and brings the researcher to wonder, "Is there a point at which empathy shuts down and we turn away?" Ultimately she comes to recognize that past experiences influences our ability to respond emphatically.
 
Each story candidly unveils the transformations the researchers and their subjects experienced in the course of their work. This illuminating book, with its unique insights, will appeal to educators, researchers, students, study participants, and everyone who wonders what goes on behind the scenes of investigative studies.

 

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Useful Optics
Walter T. Welford
University of Chicago Press, 1991
Students and professionals alike have long felt the need of a modern source of practical advice on the use of optical tools in scientific research. Walter T. Welford's Useful Optics meets this need.

Welford offers a succinct review of principles basic to the construction and use of optics in physics. His lucid explanations and clear illustrations will particularly help those whose interests lie in other areas but who nevertheless must understand enough about optics to create the experimental apparatus necessary to their research. Consistently emphasizing applications and practical points of design, Welford covers a host of topics: mirrors and prisms, optical materials, aberration, the limits of image formation and resolution, illumination for image-forming systems, laser beams, interference and interferometry, detectors and light sources, holography, and more. The final chapter deals with putting together an experimental optics system.

Many areas of the physical sciences and engineering increasingly demand an appreciation of optics. Welford's Useful Optics will prove indispensable to any researcher trying to develop and use effective optical apparatus.

Walter T. Welford (1916-1990) was professor of physics at Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine from 1951 until his death. He was a Fellow of the Royal Society and of the Optical Society of America.
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Victory and Vexation in Science
Einstein, Bohr, Heisenberg, and Others
Gerald Holton
Harvard University Press, 2005

Never has the power of scientific research to solve existing problems and uncover new ones been more evident than it is today. Yet there exists widespread ignorance about the larger contexts within which scientific research is carried out. For example, the point of view some scientists adopt in their work or in their social commitments may become clearer if considered in light of the opposing views held by other scientists.

This is a theme Gerald Holton addresses in his new collection. Whether considering conflicts between Heisenberg and Einstein, Bohr and Einstein, or P. W. Bridgman and B. F. Skinner; tracing I. I. Rabi's shift of attention from superb science to education and scientific statesmanship; or examining the emergence, in the last few decades, of the need to connect scientific research to societal needs--in each case, Holton demonstrates a masterly understanding of modern science and how it influences our world.

The author shows why, at any given time--even in the mature phase of science--there exists no single "paradigm," but rather a spectrum of competing perspectives; and why so much good science has been based, from antiquity to today, on a relatively small number of presuppositions.

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The Visual Elements—Design
A Handbook for Communicating Science and Engineering
Felice C. Frankel
University of Chicago Press, 2024
With insights and examples from designers at publications from Nature to the New York Times, an essential guide to creating figures and presentations.
 
In this short handbook, award-winning science communicator Felice C. Frankel offers a quick guide for scientists and engineers who want to share—and better understand—their research by designing compelling graphics for journal submissions, grant applications, presentations, and posters. Like all the books in the Visual Elements series, this handbook is also a training tool for researchers. Distilling her celebrated books and courses to the essentials, Frankel shows scientists and engineers, from students to primary investigators, the importance of thinking visually. This crucial volume in the Visual Elements series offers a wealth of engaging design examples. Case studies and advice from designers at prestigious publications and researchers’ own before-and-after examples show how even the smallest changes—to color, type, composition, and layering—can greatly improve communication. Ideal for researchers who want a foothold for presenting and preparing their work for everything from conferences to publications, the book explains the steps for creating a concise and communicative graphic to highlight the most important aspects of research—and to clarify researchers’ own thinking. The resulting book is an essential element of any scientist’s, engineer’s, or designer’s library.
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The Visual Elements—Photography
A Handbook for Communicating Science and Engineering
Felice C. Frankel
University of Chicago Press, 2023
For novice or pro, primary investigator or postdoc, the essentials for photographing science and technology for journals, grant applications, and public understanding.
 
Award-winning photographer Felice C. Frankel, whose work has graced the covers of Science, Nature, and Scientific American, among other publications, offers a quick guide for scientists and engineers who want to communicate—and better understand—their research by creating compelling photographs. Like all the books in the Visual Elements series, this short guide uses engaging examples to train researchers to learn visual communication. Distilling her celebrated books and courses to the essentials, Frankel shows scientists and engineers the importance of thinking visually. When she creates stunning images of scientific phenomena, she is not only interested in helping researchers to convey understanding to others in their research community or to gain media attention, but also in making these experts themselves “look longer” to understand more fully. Ideal for researchers who want a foothold for presenting and preparing their work for conferences, journal publications, and funding agencies, the book explains four tools that all readers can use—a phone, a camera, a scanner, and a microscope—and then offers important advice on composition and image manipulation ethics. The Visual Elements—Photography is an essential element in any scientist’s, engineer’s, or photographer’s library.
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Vocational Interests 18 Years After College
Edward K. Strong Jr.
University of Minnesota Press, 1955

Vocational Interests 18 Years After College was first published in 1955. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

A pioneer in scientific vocational counseling, Edward K. Strong, Jr., devised the Strong Vocational Interest Blank some years ago as a tool to help the counselor find out what kind of work a young person is best suited for. In this volume Mr. Strong reports on a study which he undertook to determine the validity of the interest blank in predicting the future vocations of individuals.

For this study, the interest scores of several hundred former college students were compared with the occupations in which these men were engaged 18 years later. The results provide answers to basic questions regarding the use of interest scores in vocational counseling. The findings also serve to confirm or modify the conclusions published earlier by Mr. Strong in his book Vocational Interests in Men and Women (a volume for which he was awarded the Butler Silver Medal by Columbia University).

The original group whim the present study is based consisted of 884 Stanford University graduates whose interests had been revealed by the use of the Vocational Interest Blank while they were in college. Follow-up data on their actual careers are presented and analyzed for approximately three fourths of this number, the remainder being eliminated because they were engaged in occupations for which no specific scales were available.

In addition to revising and amplifying Mr. Strong's earlier work on the subject, this volume outlines a number of developments which provoke new problems and point the way for future research.

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