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All social scientists learn the celebrated theories and frameworks of their predecessors, using them to inform their own research and observations. But before there can be theory, there must be theorizing. Theorizing in Social Science introduces the reader to the next generation of theory construction and suggests useful ways for creating social theory. What makes certain types of theories creative, and how does one go about theorizing in a creative way? The contributors to this landmark collection—top social scientists in the fields of sociology, economics, and management—draw on personal experiences and new findings to provide a range of answers to these questions. Some turn to cognitive psychology and neuroscience's impact on our understanding of human thought, others encourage greater dialogue between and across the arts and sciences, while still others focus on the processes by which observation leads to conceptualization. Taken together, however, the chapters collectively and actively encourage a shift in the place of theory in social science today. Appealing to students and scientists across disciplines, this collection will inspire innovative approaches to producing, teaching, and learning theory.
Although some progress has been made in recent decades in getting women into top positions in government, business and education, there are on-going, persisting challenges with efforts to improve the opportunities for women in leadership. The Handbook of Research on Gender and Leadership comprises the latest research from the world’s foremost scholars on women and leadership, exposing problems and offering both theoretical and practical solutions on how to best strengthen the impact of women around the world.
In the social sciences today, students are taught theory by reading and analyzing the works of Karl Marx, Max Weber, and other foundational figures of the discipline. What they rarely learn, however, is how to actually theorize. The Art of Social Theory is a practical guide to doing just that. In this one-of-a-kind user's manual for social theorists, Richard Swedberg explains how theorizing occurs in what he calls the context of discovery, a process in which the researcher gathers preliminary data and thinks creatively about it using tools such as metaphor, analogy, and typology. He guides readers through each step of the theorist’s art, from observation and naming to concept formation and explanation. To theorize well, you also need a sound knowledge of existing social theory. Swedberg introduces readers to the most important theories and concepts, and discusses how to go about mastering them. If you can think, you can also learn to theorize. This book shows you how. Concise and accessible, The Art of Social Theory features helpful examples throughout, and also provides practical exercises that enable readers to learn through doing.
Using theory, research evidence and experiential knowledge is a critical component of good social work. This unique text is designed to help social work students and practitioners to integrate theorizing into practice, demonstrating how to search for, select and translate academic knowledge for practical use in helping people improve their lives and environments. Presenting 32 core skills, Skills for Using Theory in Social Work provides a conceptual foundation, a vocabulary, and a set of skills to aid competent social work theorizing. Each chapter outlines the knowledge and action components of the skill and its relationship to core practice behaviours, along with learning and reflection activities. The lessons are divided into four parts: Section one discusses foundational material, including self-identification as a theorist-practitioner, the deliberate use of the term theory, and a social work approach to the selection of knowledge. Section two focuses on the adept use of theorizing skills. It covers identifying assumptions, using concepts, formulating propositions, organizing theory elements inductively or deductively, summarizing and displaying the elements of a theory, gathering and organizing assessment information and communicating with clients and colleagues about tentative theories. Section three includes lessons preparing social workers for the construction of useful middle-range theories including causal theories and interpretive theories and for testing and sharing these practical theories. Section four presents skills to develop critical thinking about theoretical knowledge. These include avoiding the misuse of theory, judging a theory using scientific standards, judging a theory by professional standards, critiquing theory in its cultural and historical context and making judgments about the likely long-term impact of a theory. This key text will help readers to demonstrate their expertise in reflective, competent, and theory-informed practice. It is suitable for all social work students and practitioners, particularly those taking practice, theory and human behaviour in the social environment courses.
Feminist Measures in Survey Research book offers a new approach for doing quantitative feminist research, demonstrating how a feminist perspective can inform virtually every aspect of the research process, from survey design, to statistical modeling, to the theoretical frameworks used to interpret results. Catherine E. Harnois makes feminist theory, particularly multiracial feminist theory, accessible and relevant to survey researchers. She assists students and researchers in incorporating these theories into survey design and analysis and shows how they this can offer substantive insights into the social world that have been underutilized to date by survey researchers.
Public debates over the last two decades about social memories, about how as societies we remember, make sense of, and even imagine and invent, our collective pasts suggest that grand narratives have been abandoned for numerous little stories that contest the unified visions of the past. But, while focusing on the diversity of social remembering, these fragmentary accounts have also revealed the fault-lines within the theoretical terrain of memory studies. This critical anthology seeks to bridge these rifts and breaks within the contemporary theoretical landscape by addressing the pressing issues of social differentiation and forgetting as also the relatively unexplored futuristic aspect of social memories. Arranged in four thematic sections which focus on the concepts, temporalities, functions and contexts of social memories, this book includes essays that range across disciplines and present a variety of theoretical approaches, from phenomenological sociology and systems theory to biography research and post-colonialism.

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