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The State and Social Investigation in Britain and the United States


  • Page extent: 456 pages
  • Size: 228 x 152 mm
  • Weight: 0.668 kg


 (ISBN-13: 9780521528535 | ISBN-10: 0521528534)

The State and Social Investigation in Britain and the United States addresses the historical development of the knowledge base upon which the public policies of the democratic state depend. This comparative study stretches from the Enlightenment origins of the impulse to base legislation on scientific knowledge to the twentieth-century development of specialised institutions and professions engaged in social investigation and public policy-making. It probes investigators' biases and omissions as well as their strengths as factors shaping social learning. It illuminates the vital link between social empiricism and the late nineteenth-century emergence of the New Liberalism in both Britain and the United States. And it ponders the impact on social investigation and social policy today of relativism, antistatism, devolution and privatisation as these currents have developed in both societies since the 1970s.


Foreword Michael J. Lacey; Part I. Knowledge and Government: 1. Social investigation, social knowledge, and the state: an introduction Michael J. Lacey and Mary O. Furner; 2. The science of the legislator: the Enlightenment heritage Donald Winch; Part II. Empiricism and the New Liberalism: 3. Experts, investigators, and the state in 1860: British social scientists through American eyes Lawrence Goldman; 4. The world of the bureaus: government and the positivist project in the late nineteenth century Michael J. Lacey; 5. The republican tradition and the new liberalism: social investigation, state building, and social learning in the gilded age Mary O. Furner; 6. The state and social investigation in Britain, 1880–1914 Roger Davidson; Part III. Pluralism, Skepticism, and the Modern State: 7. Think tanks, antistatism, and democracy: the nonpartisan ideal and policy research in the United States, 1913–87 Donald T. Critchlow; 8. Social investigation and political learning in the financing of World War I W. Elliot Brownlee; 9. The state and social investigation in Britain between the world wars Barry Supple; 10. War mobilization, institutional learning, and state building in the United States, 1917–41 Robert D. Cuff; Index.


Michael J. Lacey, Mary O. Furner, Donald Winch, Lawrence Goldman, Roger Davidson, Donald Critchlow, W. Elliot Brownlee, Barry Supple, Robert D. Cuff

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