Social Sciences Up to the Task of New Technologies

Sociologist Duncan Watts on why social science is important in technology and in broader areas of social policy:

“Companies like Facebook, Google, and Microsoft, where I now work, are beefing up their research labs both with computer scientists, who have the technical skills to handle huge datasets, and social scientists, whose job it is to ask the right questions. In fact, the emerging intersection of computer and social science–what some people are calling computational social science — is one of the hottest areas of research today…. What they need to understand is that they cannot solve these crucial problems on their own. Finding answers will require serious investment, and that will only happen when the politicians grasp that social science is real — and essential — science.” 

Duncan Watts, computational sociologist

Quote via Sage.

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