This book is a compendium of pragmatism in the social sciences. While addressing several distinct spheres, it carries a common message: the future of the social sciences depends on a shared understanding of society based on the knowledge of various disciplines and transcending the currently forbidding borders between scientiﬁc knowledge and the other forms of knowledge. Looking back at the social science traditions this is nothing new. To ensure a fruitful future for the social sciences a paradigm shift is unavoidable. The consequence of the increase of knowledge in the last two centuries was the specialization of the sciences. The nineteenth century saw the separation of humanities and social sciences; the twentieth century is even characterized by specialization within the disciplines and the occurrence of competing schools of thought. This book tries to overcome the barriers that are built between and within the disciplines, and to counteract the unnecessary barriers created by the emergence of "schools of thoughts" that distrust each other and the social sciences as a whole.
This book was originally published as a special issue of Innovation: The European Journal of Social Science Research.
Introduction: On the future of social sciences and humanities – a pragmatic perspective Ronald J. Pohoryles and Andrew Sors
1. Back to the future? From pragmatic approaches in the social sciences to the development of the patchwork theory Ronald J. Pohoryles
2. Social scientists as technicians, advisors and meaning producers Nico Stehr and Alexander Ruser
3. Society as an ethical system John Crowley
4. Travelling concepts and crossing paths: a conceptual history of identity Liana Giorgi
5. Knowledge, International Relations and the structure–agency debate: towards the concept of "epistemic selectivities" Alice B.M. Vadrot
6. The creative economy: invention of a global orthodoxy Philip Schlesinger
7. In search of experiential knowledge Stuart Blume
8. Seeing the wood for the trees: Social Science 3.0 and the role of visual thinking Joe Ravetz and Amanda Ravetz
9. Maps of the uncertain: a new approach to communicate scientific ignorance Christoph Henseler and Hans-Liudger Dienel
Obituary: A thank you note and a farewell to our colleagues to whom we owe our success Ronald J. Pohoryles